Sam Anderson, an engineering undergraduate, will be working with WES over the next 13 months as a part of a placement year for his university course. Placement years are a great option for students to develop skills and gain valuable experience before graduating and entering the working world.
What course are you studying?
M.Eng Chemical Engineering at The University of Birmingham
How have you been finding the first few weeks at WES?
The first few weeks have been excellent, it’s been great getting hands on with setting up and commissioning pumping systems; and seeing the design process I have studied being used in industry. It’s been a steep learning curve – but I can’t wait to continue integrating with WES and ultimately be managing projects of my own!
Why did you choose to do a placement year?
I always wanted to include a year in industry as part of my degree, the exposure to the working world in advance of obtaining my degree will be invaluable in applying for grad jobs. Also, I am looking forward to developing skills that can’t be obtained in lecture theatres and tutorials; building working relationships with qualified engineers and managers and absorbing the advice they have to offer.
From two weeks working with WES, I am already seeing the benefits of working for a small, rapidly growing engineering firm. The closeness of the business allows me to gain experience in multiple departments, from commissioning and building dosing rigs in the workshop and on site, to managing projects and designing systems in the CAPEX business office.
How will the placement year impact your final year of university?
By spending a year with WES, connecting the dots between engineering concepts and engineering practice, I expect I will be able to understand final year content quicker and with more depth. For example, I am already better at visualising a built system from a paper P&ID, something which took longer during my third-year design project.