More about Natacha
Placement company: Unilever (Rotterdam)
How did you spend your placement year?
“During my placement year I did two internships. Firstly, I worked at an Interior Design company in London and secondly at Unilever in Rotterdam designing packaging. Studying Furniture and Product Design definitely allows you to branch into an interior design territory. The application of the furniture design is useful but also you gain greater knowledge of materials and suitability. I was able to dive into the packaging design industry, which I had no previous experience in, due to the basics you learn in year one in the ‘design process’ module.
“On my packaging design placement at Unilever I worked on a variety of projects, gaining multiple skills and knowledge. There wasn’t an in-house design team due to outside agencies producing most of the design work, however I learnt a great deal about design management and the communication between an agency and a company who have their own design process. The tasks varied from lab testing packaging, participating in workshops, quick sketch idea generating, presentations on research and lots of analysing in almost all the work I helped on and produced.
What have you enjoyed most about your course at NTU?
“During years one and two there were a large range of projects which included several live briefs. My favourite live project was in year two where we were asked to design a coffee table for DFS to complement one of their existing sofa ranges. This was one of the first design projects where we would go to the workshops and the test prototypes. We then had to produce the final product to present to a team from DFS. As the project was hands-on and practical it was a really valuable experience which brought both challenges and a lot of fun.
“I have a good relationship with all my tutors, they are very supportive and make time if I have any issues or concerns with regards to my work, and will try to resolve them as quickly as possible. If there are other concerns such as work space or computer availability it will be put to a committee who will feed it back to try find the best solution to the problem.
“Going out into industry was definitely one of the perks about this sandwich degree course. With this it has allowed me to build connections with members in the design industry who I will stay in contact with and am likely to go back to work for.”