A Careers Panel event was hosted by the department in collaboration with CUCES (Cambridge University Chemical Engineering Society) on Tuesday 2 December 2014. The event was aimed at giving students a chance find out more about all the career options available to them and help them make better informed decisions regarding the potential of a specific career path.
The panel consisted of a selected group of industry representatives from disciplines chosen based on student feedback. The reps made themselves available for questioning about their day-to-day job roles, working lives and job applications. In addition, they provided great insights about what their career in industry is like. Corporate partners and panel members in attendance were Dr Darrin Disley - Horizon Discovery, Howard Gale - BP, Edward Cardy – Johnson Matthey, Ian Salmon and Grace White – Jacobs, Katy Coull and Robin Francis - AdLittle, Clare Philbrick – P&G and Peter Jarvis - J.P. Morgan. Also in attendance were Graham Dransfield (CEB Knowledge Transfer Co-ordinator) and Peter Harding (CU Careers Office), who told about their own roles and the services each of them provides the Department and students respectively.
Beth Jones (part2B undergrad and CUCES Careers Rep) acted as Panel Moderator whilst Elena Gonzalez (Alumni Relations) helped with the running and publicity of the event.
Elena kicked off the event with a very warm welcome to all attendees and panel members also thanking all corporate reps for offering their time to take part in the event. Beth then took over as panel moderator and kept arrangements in order and proceedings running in a timely fashion ensuring all involved had a chance to contribute and that student queries were answered.
All panel members offered very interesting insights into their own jobs and experience in industry. They also gave very useful general career tips. During the Q&A session undergrads were given the chance to ask questions about career choices in relevant Chemical Engineering and Biotech fields available to them
As Dr Darrin shared with the attentive student cohort ‘Never stop chasing your dreams and never shut off opportunities, be proactive and create opportunities for yourself too’. Peter Harding added that the role of LinkedIn as a very valuable professional platform is becoming increasingly important – one for students and graduates to showcase their talents, where one could approach prospect employers for opportunities or could even be headhunted by leaders of industry.
The career panel event was wrapped up with a networking session over Chinese food, when students had the opportunity to target representatives of the industries of interest, ask more specific questions and make valuable connections in the process. Industry reps also told them about graduate and summer internship opportunities available in their companies.
The event proved to be an invaluable opportunity for students present to gain a thorough insight into their future career options. The Department has plans to run another carer panel event for undergrads next academic year at the start of Michaelmas term. If interested in contributing to a similar event in the future please contact Elena Gonzalez on firstname.lastname@example.org