ali328
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I was looking at doing mechanical engineering at university. As i do not have the required a levels i will need to do a foundation year, this will make the course a total of 4 years without sandwhich and 5 with it.

I wanted to know will i be at a disadvantage if i do not take the sandwhich course or does it not matter.
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mattdennis
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Hi there,

My physics teacher used to work in recruitment of an Engineering firm; part of her job was to sieve through graduate engineers and choose the best ones to employ.

I asked her this same question and she was 100% sure that the answer was its definately worth it. She said the graduate engineers who'd done a year in industry were much better adapted to a working environment and she'd 'bite the hand off' anyone who'd done work experience.

Employers LOVE people who have work experience because on average they dont make as many mistakes, need as much training etc. Plus, if your employer in your industrial year likes you, you can guarantee a job in the future.

Id say it only isnt really worth it if your planning to go down a more academic route and do post-grad study. Otherwise, its a big fat yes.
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ali328
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Say I do 6 weeks summer placements every summer. How much experience do employers look for.

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ali328
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Rather than doing a placement year isn't better if i go for masters ?.
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cnova
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(Original post by ali328)
Rather than doing a placement year isn't better if i go for masters ?.
Whilst a masters is useful, employers want experience more than anything else. You'll also make money during that YINI so you could put it toward doing a masters.
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ali328
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Thanks for that
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sharp910sh
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Best to do a year in industry and a masters. A masters is very important to becoming chartered.
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Smack
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(Original post by ali328)
Say I do 6 weeks summer placements every summer. How much experience do employers look for.

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A summer placement will typically be in the region of 12 weeks, although this is still not as much as a whole year in industry.

Employers nominally do not ask for any experience for graduate positions, but having experience definitely helps when it comes to landing a job. A whole year out delays graduation by one year as you know, but many do not also consider that this also means you spend a year on a placement salary (circa £13,000 to £20,000) when you could instead graduate a year earlier and go straight onto a graduate salary (circa £23,000 to £30,000+). It's up to you whether you think the year in industry is worth it.
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Doones
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(Original post by sharp910sh)
Best to do a year in industry and a masters. A masters is very important to becoming chartered.
MEng with YINI. Cheaper.

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cnova
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(Original post by Smack)
A summer placement will typically be in the region of 12 weeks, although this is still not as much as a whole year in industry.

Employers nominally do not ask for any experience for graduate positions, but having experience definitely helps when it comes to landing a job. A whole year out delays graduation by one year as you know, but many do not also consider that this also means you spend a year on a placement salary (circa £13,000 to £20,000) when you could instead graduate a year earlier and go straight onto a graduate salary (circa £23,000 to £30,000+). It's up to you whether you think the year in industry is worth it.
The only thing is though man, with the competition for work vacancies becoming more and more competitive, he'll need the experience to help him land the work over the other people who are also applying for that same position. Also I can't remember the exact figures but with some universities 70% of their YINI students land graduate work with that same company, so if he did well enough he'd have work right out of university and would make a whole lot more money than those spending several months trying to get work.

Also what Jneill said, do a MEng with YINI; you'll have the best of both then.
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Smack
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(Original post by cnova)
The only thing is though man, with the competition for work vacancies becoming more and more competitive, he'll need the experience to help him land the work over the other people who are also applying for that same position. Also I can't remember the exact figures but with some universities 70% of their YINI students land graduate work with that same company, so if he did well enough he'd have work right out of university and would make a whole lot more money than those spending several months trying to get work.
Virtually all engineering degrees report strong employability statistics, with very low amounts of graduates still unemployed after six months. Whilst it is competitive, it's not so competitive that one needs a whole year of experience to secure a graduate position.
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cnova
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(Original post by Smack)
Virtually all engineering degrees report strong employability statistics, with very low amounts of graduates still unemployed after six months. Whilst it is competitive, it's not so competitive that one needs a whole year of experience to secure a graduate position.
But if he does the YINI and performs adequately he's pretty much guaranteed work with that company. Also with more experience he'll be able to demand a higher salary. The best graduate placements put emphasis on things like experience etc. so he'll be on the higher end of the earnings you mentioned earlier. Finally most people who have done a YINI mention that it taught them even more than they've learned in university and then they smashed their final year grade wise.
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Muttley79
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Sandwich placements are very competitive and scarce at the moment ... many students have not found a placement and so don't assume you will get one.
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cnova
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(Original post by Muttley79)
Sandwich placements are very competitive and scarce at the moment ... many students have not found a placement and so don't assume you will get one.
With most universities though, if students are unable to find a placement, they're just put on to the regular version of their course. With YINI you have IAESTE, which would be a brilliant experience on both a work and personal level (for me at least).
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Muttley79
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Yes - they are but most people assume you 'automatically' get a placement.

From what I hear some YINI admin staff are not the most helpful and some students have been messed around and ended up with nothing.
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Smack
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(Original post by cnova)
Also with more experience he'll be able to demand a higher salary.
Not at all. Companies have a set graduate salary such that everyone who joins as a graduate will be on the same salary regardless of any previous experience.
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datpiff
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I already did a sandwich year. Spent a year during uni working at Subway


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cnova
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(Original post by Smack)
Not at all. Companies have a set graduate salary such that everyone who joins as a graduate will be on the same salary regardless of any previous experience.
I meant that as in able to go for the higher paying graduate placements.

(Original post by datpiff)
I already did a sandwich year. Spent a year during uni working at Subway
I'm not sure what you did, but all people who do STEM subjects with YINI have to work in the same field that they're studying, so Subway isn't an option (unless you were working on their IT infrastructure or something).
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Smack
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(Original post by cnova)
I meant that as in able to go for the higher paying graduate placements.
You can go for the higher paying graduate jobs without a year's placement.
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cnova
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(Original post by Smack)
You can go for the higher paying graduate jobs without a year's placement.
Meh. Yes they can apply for them however the higher paying ones are really competitive and therefore the experience is invaluable.

I'm not saying people who aren't or haven't done a YINI can't get the higher paying placements, what I am saying is though is that if two people have a 2:1 and a relatively similar background then they will take the one with a years worth of experience under their belt already.
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