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In-demand Tom off to a flying start with industry placement

Impressing an international pioneer in the aerospace industry has earned one Mechanical Engineering student from De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) a year-long work placement.


After beating hundreds of applicants during a competitive selection and assessment process, Tom Hobson will be starting an operational internship with Airbus this summer.

Tom was also successful in landing a placement offer with Jaguar Landrover, which he turned down in favour of a position with the aerospace manufacturer.

He will be based at the company’s Broughton site where more than 6,000 employees are responsible for assembling wings for the entire family of Airbus commercial aircraft.

The 21-year-old from Whitchurch near Chester said: “I wasn’t expecting to have much success, so I applied to a lot of smaller companies too. It was a great compliment to get both offers from such big industry names.”

During his placement, Tom will have the chance to experience the wide range of processes carried out at the site.

“I’m really looking forward to being exposed to the different areas of the business and to applying knowledge from my course into each given area too,” he said.

“I’ll be learning from industry experts and could even get the chance to travel to the Airbus headquarters in France and their site in Hamburg.

“Getting this level of experience will look great on my CV and will set me apart from other graduates – it’s exactly what employers look for. Earning a wage at the same time is an added bonus.

“Who knows, if I do exceptionally well, they may even offer me a permanent job.”

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Tom praised the support he received from #DMUworks, a programme aimed at giving students the necessary skills and qualities that employers look for.

He said: “The placement team was really helpful. They shared handy interview techniques and even did mock interviews with me. Their feedback on these definitely helped me on the day.”

After sending off an application form, Tom had to complete an online assessment. He was then shortlisted for an assessment day in person, where he took part in a group project and presentation, as well as a face-to-face interview.

Tom first chose to study Engineering Year Zero at DMU three years ago because he liked the campus and stayed on for his BEng.

“The course provides a good balance between practical and theory. You get to conduct lots of lab experiments related to everyday tests you would do in an engineering job,” he said.

“During the first year you get the chance to learn about both the electronic and mechanical side of things, which is really enjoyable.

“In your final year you get to focus on a research project and I’m hoping during my Airbus placement I might find a link to do some research for them.”

Tom enjoys sharing his passion for engineering with other students and as the secretary of the DMU Engineers society, he helped arrange a guided tour for 20 students of the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva.

Posted on Wednesday 9th May 2018

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