Category Archives: Information Technology

Employer Case Study: University of Exeter

Name of Organisation: University of Exeter

Name of Employer: Amy Binner

Job Title: Senior Lecturer

Internship Scheme used: Student Campus Partnership (SCP) | Employer Engagement & Student Employment | University of Exeter

Feedback:

“The internship culminated in the production of complete and validated code for a pilot project and a well formulated protocol for scaling up the work.

Our intern took the lead on co-ordinating and bringing together six programmers from across three different institutions and organised live coding sprints which played a key role in progressing on the development and validation of integrated code. He succeeded at this intimidating task which required leadership, organisation, clear communication and listening, forward-planning and delegation skills.

It was great to have our intern, the experience was both productive and fun. He was a vital member of the project team and throughout the internship he brought a positive energy and passion for his work. He rose to the challenges of working in an international and cross-disciplinary team and adopted a flexible approach. I particularly appreciated his problem solving skills and his patient and unassuming approach to communicating solutions and transferring knowledge. I wouldn’t hesitate to work with him again in the future.”

Student Case Study: Research Intern – Decolonising Environmental Science

Name of Student:  Burhanuddin Anis

Degree Subject:  Natural Sciences

Job Title: SCP6014 Research Intern – Decolonising Environmental Science

Company Name:  University of Exeter

Type of Internship:  Student Campus Partnerships (SCPs)  

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

Putting together python script to automate the scraping of scopus exports for key data involved in a systematic literature review pertaining to parachute science, particular the author affiliations and sites of study of various paleo-ecological studies.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

Produces a fully documented and functioning script that automated a large part of the literature review, going through about 8000 results automatically, saving manual work.

Were there any challenges and how did you overcome these?

Often the code didn’t quite work the way we intended, returning incorrect data. Overcame these by sharing with my supervisor and co-worker, who helped troubleshoot and come up with lateral solutions to the problems.

Skills Learnt: 

  • Focus on Goals and Outcomes
  • IT
  • Researching

Attributes Developed:

  • Logical thinking
  • Independence
  • Work Ethic

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

Overall, my internship experience was excellent. I learnt a lot about working in an active research team, as I was able to see a project idea go from just that, to actively developing a methodology with my co-worker and supervisor, into having a large role in implementing this methodology. I greatly improved my confidence in communicating with a team and also greatly enhanced my knowledge of data analytics in python programming. I thought that it was particular good that I was able to actively suggest ideas to the development of the project, I felt that I was genuinely an equal contributor to the goal and this made the internship that much more fulfilling. Thomas Roland was a great supervisor and I’m grateful for his guidance and his willingness to trust my skill set!

Student Case Study: University of Exeter with Diego Marmsoler

Name of Student:  Teddy Cameron-Burke

Degree Subject:  Computer Science and Mathematics

Job Title: SCP 6021 Research Intern

Company Name:  University of Exeter with Diego Marmsoler

Type of Internship:  Student Campus Partnerships (SCPs)  

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

Formal verification and automation of automata

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

Verified all machines necessary, and personally learned the isabelle programming language

Were there any challenges and how did you overcome these?

Steep learning curve to learn isabelle, which was overcome via example problems

Skills Learnt: 

  • Teamwork and Collaboration
  • Organisation
  • Leadership

Attributes Developed:

  • Creative thinking
  • Independence
  • Professionalism

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

Overall the internship was fantastic, I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in the mathematics of computer science and or getting into cyber security. From the internship I have many new contacts within the university, and have managed to organise a third year project with the significant advantage of already knowing the programming language. My supervisor, Diego Marmsoler, was excellent at being on hand to deal with any problems I had during the internship and was very welcoming to me and my peers. The internship was challenging but that was what made solving each problem that much more rewarding!

Student Case Study: Research Assistant UofE

Name of Student:  Elizabeth Hedges

Degree Subject:  BA Philosophy

Job Title: Research Assistant

Company Name:  University of Exeter

Type of Internship:  Access to Internships (A2I)

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

– checking references in manuscript
– searching through library databases for research
– searching through recently published relevant works

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

I learnt how philosophical research is done, and was able to apply that to help towards a final project. Since I was working with a manuscript, I wasn’t able to produce a final project, but I did create smaller goals that I was able to achieve, such as following lines of research, and finding specific items of evidence for arguments.

Were there any challenges and how did you overcome these?

When I first started, I had trouble finding relevant information, as I would search though databases, and thousands of texts would come up. I was able to work with the library to practice my research skills, and I am now able to research effectively.

Skills Learnt: 

  • Ability to Work Under Pressure
  • Organisation
  • Leadership
  • Strategic Planning
  • Decision Making

Attributes Developed:

  • Logical thinking
  • Creative thinking
  • Independence
  • Work Ethic
  • Professionalism

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

I worked as a research assistant, for a lecturer I admire, on a piece of work that I found extremely interesting. I was clear that I hope to work as an academic, so I was allowed to experience what this would be like, through the work I was asked to do. I felt supported throughout my internship, and whilst I was working towards various goals, I was allowed to follow my own interests in the topic and develop the skills that I wanted to focus on. I loved working as an intern, and am very excited for the opportunities it has opened for me.

Student Case Study: University of Exeter

Name of Student:  Ghalia Abel

Degree Subject: MPH Biological Sciences

Job Title: Digital Learning Developer

Company Name:  University of Exeter

Type of Internship:  Graduate Business Partnership (GBP)

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

Providing digital support to university staff for online and blended learning materials.

What outputs and outcomes did you deliver for your employer?  

As part of a team I produced a digital magazine showcasing the innovative teaching and learning used by The University of Exeter Business School academics to enhance the student digital Learning experience. This magazine highlighted the numerous methods and creativity of the UEBS academics when teaching.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

An academic was looking to produce a short conference video with the speaker as the main subject on the screen. My task was to find a software that allowed video editing flexibility. I began researching and found an open source software that could be used to achieve the academics vision. The academic was able to produce the video and submit it for the conference in a timely manner. The talk was accepted and received great feedback.

Skills Learnt: 

  • Focus on Goals and Outcomes
  • Organisation
  • IT
  • Strategic Planning
  • Decision Making

Attributes Developed:

  • Logical thinking
  • Creative thinking
  • Independence
  • Work Ethic
  • Professionalism

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

“The internship allowed me to learn many new digital skills and work as part of a welcoming and friendly team. The flexibility of the internship allowed me to manage my time and prioritise tasks while continuing to progress as an individual.”

Student Case Study: University of Exeter

Name of Student:  Jude Ratnayake

Degree Subject: BA Geography

Job Title: SCP 5698 Global Systems Institute

Company Name:  University of Exeter

Type of Internship: Student Campus Partnerships (SCPs)  

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

Developing an academic master database that characterised and processed a variety of key academic publications (written by members of the Global Systems Institute) according to their relevance with the Sustainable Development Goals. Reviewing academic publications and identifying key words that would be useful for readers. Reviewing academic publications and identifying specific geographical locations they related to.

What outputs and outcomes did you deliver for your employer?  

I produced an extensive master database comprised of 458 individual publications from 73 Global Systems Institute (GSI) academics covering a range of different disciplinary fields. The database can be used for the GSI Website to highlight the relevance of the University of Exeter’s research (GSI) to the global Sustainable Development Goals. The database can also be used for the GSI Website to highlight how the University of Exeter’s research (GSI) engages with a diverse range of geographical locations on an international/global scale. The database can also be used for the GSI Website to allow readers to better navigate and identify academic publications that are of interest to them using the keywords tool.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

My biggest achievement was the successful completion of the internship’s final end-product: GSI Master Database. Throughout the month-long internship period, I consistently worked full-time on developing this database (a total of three versions) ensuring I used my critical analysis and research skills to collate various academic publications via a digital database that provided useful information regarding the specific SDGs, specific geographical locations and specific keywords the publications related to. As a result, an extensive master database can be used for the development/advancement of the GSI website. Additionally, the internship gave me a stronger grasp and understanding of the globally significant SDGs.

What did not go so well on your internship? How did you overcome any challenges?

I did not find any specific challenges whilst working on this internship. This was because I remained in regular contact with my line manager who helped clarify any issues could have been encountered, for example, what to do when limited information was available for a particular publication/academic.

Skills Learnt: 

  • Ability to Work Under Pressure
  • Organisation
  • Focus on Goals and Outcomes
  • Leadership
  • Strategic Planning

Attributes Developed:

  • Logical thinking
  • Perseverance
  • Personal Awareness
  • Independence
  • Work Ethic

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

“This internship experience was extremely rewarding for me. I was able to expand my knowledge and engagement with the global SDGs and I was able to develop my digital communication and research skills (critical analysis) whilst creating this master database for the GSI. I demonstrated my self-sufficiency in a remote working environment whilst also maintaining effective communication skills with my line manager that led to the successful delivery of the master database which can inform the GSI’s future website development.”

 

Student Case Study: SageTech

Name of Student:  Hannah Woodward

Degree Subject: BA Geography

Type of Internship: Green Consultants Scheme

Company Name: SageTech Medical Equipment Ltd.

Job Title: Green Consultant

Description Of Company: SageTech is a medical equipment company that has developed a comprehensive way to capture, extract and purify volatile anaesthetic gases to PhEur monograph standard.

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

The key aim of this internship was to improve SageTech’s corporate social responsibility (CSR). I looked into gaining B Corporate certification for SageTech and also investigated its engagement with the Sustainable Development Goals. Due to SageTech being a relatively small company without extensive policies in place, the corresponding questionnaires insinuated that the company was only 17% aligned with the SDGs; since SageTech’s technology is designed to reduce the NHS’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, I deemed this to be an inappropriate representation of the business. After further discussions with the client, the chosen method for improving SageTech’s CSR was to investigate the possibility of joining a carbon credit scheme. I looked at numerous options, including the UK government’s new cap and trade scheme that was implemented this year post-Brexit. However, ongoing communication with the client led to the decision that I would work on creating a methodology that would be required for SageTech to join the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS), a voluntary carbon credit scheme.

What outputs and outcomes did you deliver for your employer?

I created a presentation for my client that outlined what information would be required from SageTech in order to join the VCS. I generated this after looking at previous accepted templates from other companies that joined the scheme. This presentation and all my sources were sent over to my client, who passed it on to the relevant team to begin putting the information together in the required format.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

Helping a company like SageTech improve its reach was a significant achievement in my internship. SageTech’s technology is revolutionary for organisations like the NHS, which emits extensive of volumes of anaesthetic gas annually. If more hospitals install the technology to tackle this, encouraged by schemes such as the VCS, GHG emissions could be reduced significantly. The ability to join a carbon credit scheme would promote the technology on an even greater scale, encouraging investment and the potential for implementation internationally.

What did not go so well on your internship? How did you overcome any challenges?

It was challenging to not be able to access SageTech’s offices, as it limited contact with the client. However, through multiple Zoom calls and email correspondence, I was able to overcome this due to how helpful my contact at SageTech was. Finding a sustainability solution for an inherently environmental company in the first place was a challenge and required me to think outside of the box from my Green Consultant training. Coupled with communication with the client, an appropriate solution was found, and the project was a success.

Skills Learnt: 

  • Ability to Work Under Pressure
  • Organisation
  • Decision Making
  • Researching
  • Time and Work Load Management

Attributes Developed:

  • Initiative
  • Perseverance
  • Professionalism
  • Confidence
  • Motivation

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

“It is always best to be confident and to not be afraid to ask questions, as it ensures that you are on the same page as the client when it comes to producing a piece of work or conducting research for them. Communication is key as it inherently establishes confidence in both parties. Suggesting your own ideas will demonstrate your ability to show initiative too, so it is important to back your own thoughts rather than being scared of being wrong!”

Heritage Innovation Website Content Developer – University of Exeter Culture Team

“I built some strong connections whilst also deepening my love of the heritage sector through my writing”

Name: Frank Allen

Degree Programme: BA History

Year of Study (at time of completing internship): 2nd Year

Pathway Programme Completed: Pathways to Arts, Culture, and Heritage

Internship Role/Job Title: Heritage Innovation Website Content Developer

Internship Employer: University of Exeter Culture Team

Please outline the project you worked on during your Pathways internship. What achievements are you particularly proud of? How will your work be helping others?

At the tender age of eight, I fondly remembered visiting Lichfield Cathedral. I was awe-struck by it. The Cathedral’s imposing spires, majestic arches, and grand scale captured my imagination. Therefore, when I saw the opportunity to work for the University of Exeter’s heritage team as a website content developer, I immediately applied.

I was asked to produce articles and blog pieces for the University’s Heritage website with my colleague, Kate, whilst also suggesting upgrades for the website and tweets to write. With only a brief knowledge of Devon and Cornwall’s heritage, and of the work that the University was doing to study it, I was excited to begin the role and learn more. The research assistants, Gilda and Eloise, guided me towards some captivating projects. Their research ranged counties and specialities, considering both natural and man-made heritage and its effects on communities, policies, and even animals! My task was to synthesise these insights into four enthralling pieces of writing for a wider audience, which would then have to be publicised. I started with the news articles. Consisting of only a few hundred words, I scoured my research reports for recent events that took my interest. Using a few examples on the Heritage website as my guide, I was excited to discuss Professor DeSilvey’s project, which would investigate strategies into heritage loss and conservation. I was also eager to talk about Dr Naomi Sykes’ new research into why we love to feed animals, using heritage sites as a testing ground. This followed nicely from Dr Brazier and Puttock’s research into Eurasian beavers on Holnicote estate.

Moving onto the blog articles, two themes across the heritage sector caught my attention: climate change and the debate around the loss of heritage. Touching upon artistic projects and a bid involving University of Exeter professors, I highlighted how important the consideration of Climate Change was in heritage conservation in the future. However, does this heritage even need to be conserved in the first place? In her book ‘Curated Decay’, Professor DeSilvey suggests that we should allow nature to take its course. This discussion around heritage conservation informed my second blog post. A common thread through these themes, though, was an ethical discussion of what heritage meant to a community. This captivated me the most, reminding me of how I became interested in my own heritage, to begin with.

How did you overcome a particular challenge during your internship, for example, challenges linked to working remotely?

I found the work with the Culture Team’s heritage sector challenging, but at the same time incredibly thought-provoking and rewarding. Time management was key. Kate and I managed to produce a schedule for the week, dividing each day into achievable objectives. This skill was very useful in creating the Heritage website’s Twitter timeline as well. However, this would not have been possible without strong teamwork and communication. Meetings and emails with both my team and the professors I wrote about were integral to producing high-quality pieces of writing. In the end, I built some strong connections whilst also deepening my love of the heritage sector through my writing.

Why would you recommend a Professional Pathways internship to future students?

The role of website content developer equipped me with some invaluable skills whilst I pursued a field that I would love to work in again in the future. I could not recommend the role enough to anyone keen on finding out more about heritage and what it means for them and their community.

Employer Case Study:  Jurassic Fibre Ltd

Name of Organisation:  Jurassic Fibre Ltd

Description of Organisation: Jurassic was founded by CEO Michael Maltby, a resident of Sidmouth in East Devon. Michael has built fibre and similar networks around the world, including in Russia and the Caribbean, and his goal is to build the digital infrastructure you deserve to support your lifestyle in the 21st Century.

Jurassic Fibre is part of the Fern Trading Group, and has substantial funds available to deliver a top quality fibre broadband network for the South West. We are planning to invest over £250m into building a fibre network in Devon, Dorset and Somerset, passing over 300,000 homes, making gigabit speeds a reality.

With the valued support of our partners – who together form a world-class supply chain to deliver fibre to the region – we started to build in 2019, with continued growth always on the horizon.

Name of Employer:  Gillian Huppler

Job Title: SHEQ Manager

Internship Scheme usedGreen Consultants 

Feedback:

“We recruited an intern to work as a Green Consultant. They provided us with a report identifying JFL strengths, weaknesses, opportunities to improve and potential threats associated with current compliance. He gave us an overview of what competitors are doing and gave us recommendations. He used our auditing tool (iAuditor) and build useful audit formats which will enable us to monitor compliance and track our performance.

I was hoping to get the student involved in review our waste management but the manager involved had been given an important task and was not forthcoming with the information. Our intern handled this well and we discussed other objectives, he got on very well with the change of plan.

I would have been more than happy to offer our intern a role if there was one available and I will be discussing this with CEO to see if there is any future opportunities.

The student provided us with some extremely useful information which will add value to our business. He was professional, pleasant, enthusiastic and would be a great asset to any company. He worked well in the office and on site talking to the civils teams undertaking excavations. Our intern provided us with a useful presentation to enable our company to understand our opportunities for improvement and developed useful tools for monitoring progress, which is amazing as we only had him for 35 hours. If this is the quality of Students Exeter can provide, we will definitely be looking to repeat this in the future.”

Employer Case Study: EFFECT Photonics Ltd (2)

Name of Organisation:  EFFECT Photonics Ltd

Description of Organisation: EFFECT Photonics have been shaping the future of photonics by interconnecting humanity through fast, affordable, sustainable, and effective communication technologies. The emergence of DWDM is one of the most innovative and important phenomena in the development of fibre optic communication technology. From both technical and economical perspectives, the ability to provide the world potentially unlimited data transmission capacity and bandwidth is a massive advantage of our DWDM technology.

Name of Employer:  Tim Durrant

Job Title: Engineering Manager

Internship Scheme usedGreen Consultants

“The green consultant student was tasked with providing a top level briefing for a gap analysis of our high tech start up business for plans to achieve ISO14001 in 2021. With her we worked up a plan for surveying the business though all the main stake holders. This work was then followed through and an excellent Executive Summary report with appendices showing main points for 14001, with linkage to ISO9001 (which we are working on this year). A very useful foundation document setting the scene for the future. The intern fully fulfilled the brief and even exceeded it by linking across to ISO9001.

The student worked flexibly and coped well with working around her exams and the additional challenges of Covid19. We had no issues and highly recommend the Green Consultants Scheme.”