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I applied for the Female Undergraduate of the Year Awards as it was sponsored by Rolls-Royce. I have always been interested in aviation and aerospace and was keen to gain experience with a leading, established and global company.

After completing an online application and aptitude tests I was delighted to receive the news that out of nearly 700 applicants, I had been shortlisted to the final twenty and had been invited to attend a Rolls-Royce assessment centre. I successfully made it to the final stage of the competition where I attended an award ceremony in Canary Wharf, London, as one of the top ten Female Undergraduate of the Year Award finalists. This impressive and unforgettable experience consisted of enjoying a three course meal in a beautiful venue, while networking with many talented, successful and inspirational individuals.

As a top ten finalist, I attained a ten week internship at Rolls-Royce, as a software engineer.

During my internship I was allocated to the Future Tools team, a Software Development team dedicated to designing and deploying software tools for internal departments. My project was to develop an SQLite database in Python, a challenge as I had not before programmed in Python, however, it was incredibly rewarding to see this project progress along with my programming skills. Although my degree is in mechanical engineering, I see great potential in gaining experience in software and systems. I am interested in data analytics and how this can be applied to optimise many aspects of engineering. During my placement I also completed three days of work experience at R2 Data Labs and at the Innovation Lab. I helped create a chatbot, tested VR equipment, gained an insight into quantum computing and learnt more about how data analytics is being applied. It was interesting to learn about how data is used to identify faults and optimise engine maintenance management and how it will be crucial in the near future to predict required maintenance.

Not only did I gain technical skills during my time at Rolls-Royce, I showed leadership in coordinating, organising and facilitating a week of events aimed at celebrating diversity and inclusion. This involved effectively communicating and liaising with other agencies and using negotiation and delegation skills to ensure shared objectives were met. As part of the week, I successfully created and presented a one-hour workshop focused on generational perspectives in the workplace.

I really enjoyed my time at Rolls-Royce and would recommend applying to the Undergraduate of the Year Awards as it is a great opportunity to network and gain valuable experience. I am delighted to have attained a position at Rolls-Royce on the graduate scheme through the Female Undergraduate of the Year Awards.