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MEng Mechanical Engineering student Louis tells us about his placement year and how it has offered opportunities to help with his future career.

Choosing to do a placement year was one of my better decisions. After months of searching and feeling like I wasn’t getting anywhere, my perfect placement job came up at ASM Assembly Systems Weymouth in the tooling department.

At the start of searching for placements I applied for every placement under the sun to do with Mechanical Engineering for months and months and heard nothing back. After looking for so long I had told myself I was going to have to skip the placement year (I really didn’t want to do this!) and crack on with final year with no experience in the Engineering world….

Later in the year I found the perfect placement at ASM Assembly Systems in Weymouth. A fellow student who had previously undertook a placement with ASM Assembly Systems spoke very highly of the company. I went along to the interview and was amazed by the size of the company and their involvement around the world. I was so relieved when I found out I had been offered a 12-month placement here and couldn’t wait to start. So much that I’m still there now a year and a half later completing my BEng project completely funded by them.

One of my favourite parts of placement was the feeling of the work I was doing was contributing to society and seeing my work develop from the initial concept to the finished product. I also enjoyed working with different departments throughout the designing process and gaining an insight into the everyday working lives of them as well as my department. I also really enjoyed earning money whilst being a placement student and was something I missed returning to University.

Throughout my placement, I was offered many different opportunities such as making different tools for worldwide companies and keeping in contact with some big companies from around the world.

ASM takes on multiple students so this develops a nice student community and hosts many social events throughout the year to keep you busy and the company also offers different sports and social clubs to keep you extra busy.

During my time I expected to improve my engineering skills, but I also unexpectedly improved my skills for working in a professional environment.

My future plans for my final year and beyond include completing my master’s in engineering and then hopefully moving on to be a chartered engineer.

My placement year has really helped me develop my knowledge and understanding of the Engineering world and I can’t wait to get out there and gain more knowledge in the industry of Engineering.

Top 3 things to think about when applying for placement:

  1. Don’t feel let down if you get turned down
  2. Get prepared early
  3. Don’t be afraid to call or email companies who may not be advertising

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