Get the most from work experience or placements.
Relevant work experience can benefit you after graduation, making you a more viable proposition to prospective employers. Not only does it give you a chance to gain skills, it also allows valuable networking opportunities and may lead to a job offer after graduation.
If you are on a sandwich year, your placements office will give you guidance. However, even if you have arranged your own experience there are a number of things you can do to make sure that you get the most out of your experience.
Consider asking for someone to act as a mentor or supervisor so that you can gain feedback and ask questions about the job and about the industry in general. You may also want to consider visiting different departments or business areas to gain experience and find out as much as possible about the different functions of the organisation.
If you are considering becoming professionally qualified, you should review the competence and commitment statements set out by Engineering Council. The assessment for professional engineer status is based on competence. This is gained through a combination of underpinning knowledge and understanding as well as professional experience.
You will not be able to gain all the required experience on a placement but you can set goals before you start, reflect on what you have learned and record this for future reference. You can record this either in a log book or personal development plan or by using Career Manager. You should also consider getting records signed off or verified for use in the future as evidence of your commitment to professional development and so that you can track your progress over time.
You may also wish to register your intention to work towards professional registration with us, this will allow the IET to keep in touch, update you on relevant developments and keep you up to date with professional development offerings.
As you move into your final year, you may also want to plan a final year project. Information about this can be found in the students and apprentices gateway.