Searching for a Placement
The CUED Placements philosophy is based on this well known proverb " Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. "
Some steps are laid out below for you to follow, and you can find further help under Quick Links to the right. Preparation is the key, so you need to devise a strategy and execute it. The ability to present yourself is crucial, as well as acquiring an understanding of the market place. Finding contacts is the next step, there is an abundance of databases and CUED maintains a contacts database available via the Internet. You will need to negotiate with the employer and then decide if you are going to accept an offer.
Finally, you will need to record and then present your completed work to the Industrial Placement Co-ordinator, usually via a LLogbook or a letter from the employer.
Fishing for a placement
If you were going fishing, it would be a waste of time if you did not have the right equipment, if you were fishing for haddock in a fresh water lake and you were unaware of the type of bait the various breeds of fish like to eat. Here is some advice on what you need, where to fish for placements and how to put some nice juicy bait on your hook.
- Planning a strategy: Try to target your efforts, and plan for how you will do this. Planning is essntial for any professional engineer, as is contingency for when the plan does not work.
- Self Presentation: A lot of people let themselves down by presenting themselves poorly. This section contains some guidance on CVs/resumes, cover notes and employer contact.
- Databases and other information sources: Once you have sorted out a strategy, you will need to choose a place to dangle your line. Databases are oceans of information and CUED organise one and there are many publicly accessible databases where potential contacts lurk.
- Keeping track: You need to keep a close track of the companies and organisations that you have contacted. Essentially, job searching is a project management exercise. You can use either a PDF file or an MS Word file to help you stay on top of your campaign.
- Interview: Having hooked your fish, you need to land it. If you have the opportunity of an interview, make the most of it.
- Etiquette: CUED's do's and don'ts of dealing with employers.
- Advice and Help: CUED has an Industrial Placement Co-ordinator and an Assistant, they are there for your benefit, use them.