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Valuable placement year kick-starts Karishma's career


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Graduating with a First and embarking on her dream career during a global pandemic is thanks to completing a placement year, according to Karishma Samani.

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The Computing for Business graduate, who joined De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) through Clearing four years ago, secured a job in February with Kainos, an award-winning company specialising in digital solutions for commercial, public and healthcare clients worldwide.

“I was so relieved to get accepted onto a graduate scheme before finishing my degree and I feel so lucky that the offer wasn’t withdrawn because of coronavirus,” said the 23-year-old from Leicester.

After a seven-week training academy starting in November, Karishma will begin her role as a software testing engineer, working closely with in-house developers and external clients.

She said: “The job is all about relaying technical information to clients in a non-technical way. I will be working with them to understand what they need, our software engineers will then develop something and I will test it for them.

“It’s sad that I’ll be working from home at first, but our safety is important to Kainos and they’ve been amazing. They’ve sent me a laptop and everything else I need to get started, plus they’ve come up with fun ways for us new-starters to get to know each other online.”

This was the first graduate scheme Karishma applied for and she credits her industry experience with her success. As well as proving herself in group activities and a competency test, she also stood out in her interview.

“Everyone on the interview panel was impressed with the experience I had from my placement, because I was able to talk about real-world scenarios. This is why doing a year’s placement is so important - I’d recommend it to anyone,” she said.

“I was also calmer going into it and able to present myself well thanks to my year in industry, but also thanks to DMU’s placement team who helped to prepare me for the workplace with mock interviews and CV-writing sessions.”

During her placement year as a trainee developer for high street giant Next, Karishma worked closely with the content team to push their creations out live onto the retailer’s website.

She said: “It was a lot of responsibility and for the launch of new collections I would have to go in at 3am to make sure that everything ran smoothly. For projects like that I got to see the support team in action too, which was really interesting.”

Not only did the experience help land Karishma a graduate job, it also had a positive impact on her final-year studies, leading to a First in her degree.

“Doing a placement completely changed my mindset. I realised that to be successful, you’ve got to work hard. So I applied that to my studies and it helped me to reach my full potential,” she said.

Karishma joined DMU through Clearing, after not getting the A-level results she expected.

She said: “I knew what I wanted to study and luckily DMU offered a similar degree. The Clearing process was really straightforward and within a few hours of calling the helpline I received a confirmation email.

“I feel like everything turned out for the best in the end and I have absolutely no regrets about choosing DMU.”

Posted on Monday 21st September 2020

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