Yes, yes it is.

I was initially reticent before choosing to do an industrial placement. There are some obvious factors that came into consideration:

1. All my friends are doing three year programmes – I thought the same, but it turns out that lots of people end up doing four year programmes through ERASMUS schemes, Master courses or simply the industrial placement. Equally, I have now got a lot of friends who have been unable to obtain their first choice jobs and consequently wish that they were still at university with a years experience under their belts.

2. I am thinking about doing a year abroad instead to learn a new language – I did consider this as it appears to be a slightly more exotic option. However, I opted for the industrial placement for two main reasons. Firstly, when graduating from university, I think the industrial placement is considered more valuable by employers (unless a language is required – obviously). Secondly, I’m useless at languages.

3. I want to graduate and start my career ASAP! – I empathise with this sentiment. However, for me, my time at Deloitte has started my career, as I will simply continue where I left off on my return (with early promotion on the cards!). The industrial placement also offers you the opportunity to ‘test out’ a career path. You may find that you enjoy the line of work you have entered (like me), but you may also learn that your chosen profession isn’t quite what you imagined!

4. I’m concerned about prolonging my university fees and loans – I wouldn’t worry about that, you will be making a tidy sum during your industrial placement!

To summarise, I can’t recommend the industrial placement highly enough. I would value it above a 1st class degree and a language, and in this economic climate any experience is invaluable, let alone a year’s worth. I have friends juggling dissertations, exams and job applications, whereas I can focus solely on my studies in my final year. The placement will also be funding a year of travelling before I dive into the deep dark world of work!