I am an Accounting and Finance student at Leeds Beckett University and I am currently on a placement year as part of my 4-year sandwich course. Amongst other Universities, Leeds Beckett offered the opportunity to take a year out for a placement and this forms part of your final grade as it is classed as a final year module. This really appealed to me as not only will it allow me to gain exposure in a real business environment, but it would also be something different to studying and working in the classroom.
I am on a year’s Finance internship at Dowty Propellers which is a subsidiary of GE Aviation. My role is very versatile as I am involved in all areas of finance, so each day is different depending on what is required of me. Every week I have to complete and send out reports to allow them to see our current financial position. An example of a report I send out is the sales report which we use in a weekly meeting to see if we are going to hit our forecasted sales and profit numbers. The numbers that I report are used by the wider business which makes me feel like my work is valued and needed for the running of the business, I also get to experience working with senior leaders in the meetings which is great exposure.
This internship has helped me prepare for full time employment as I have been able to work in a variety of different areas of finance including Supply Chain, Controllership and Accounts Payables which has allowed me to see what kind of finance I would like to specialise in when I am applying for Graduate roles and beyond. This internship has also opened by eyes to the Aviation and Aerospace industry which I otherwise would not have ever had interest in, I have grown to love the product and the work that we do here at Dowty Propellers.
My advice to anyone that is applying to internships is to stick through the hard times of being rejected and the hours taken to complete applications as this experience is definitely worth it. It will give you insight into your future career without being tied down to a job but if you make a good enough impression you will get your foot in the door opening up opportunities for roles after you graduate. Also, in my case, this year counts towards my final grade so if you perform well it will take the pressure off of your final year studies.