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Nathan Gibbons

Nathan
Gibbons

United Kingdom
What I enjoy most is being involved in a range of interesting projects that have helped me to develop my design engineering knowledge.

More about Nathan

Nathan graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Product Design in 2018. He now works for Endomagnetics Ltd.

Placement company: Sealed Air Diversey Care (Utrecht, Netherlands)

What did you enjoy most about your course at NTU?

“What I enjoy most is being involved in a range of interesting projects that have helped me to develop my design engineering knowledge. The course is quite technical, so it’s important to use your free time wisely, reflecting on notes and getting support from staff. As long as you have an interest in design you should enjoy the course.

What did you think about the course staff?

“You tend to be working independently but the staff are very good at giving constructive criticism that helps guide you through projects. Lectures tend to be engaging depending on how the lecturer style of presenting information. Tutors are very supportive with optimising the university experience, for the students especially in the small group tutor sessions where there is a lot more focus individuals feedback in the groups.

Did you find the course’s trips useful to your studies?

“There have been a few trips in my time on the course, the ones that were most useful were the visit to the NEC for the engineering convention in Birmingham and the finals of the Engineers Without Borders (EWB) competition in London. At the engineering convention I was able to find out about potential engineering companies I could work for in the future and learn more about them while I was there. The finals of the EWB competition gave me a better insight into considerations needed to incorporate your designs in the real world.

How did you spend your placement year?

“I spent my placement year working for Sealed Air Diversey Care in Utrecht, Netherlands. They specialise in cleaning, hygiene, food safety and infection prevention solutions. My role was to contribute to various projects within the engineering team which included responsibilities like redesigning components for existing products, performing laboratory testing e.g. chemical compatibility tests, building test rigs and designing models in the workshops.

What was the most interesting or enjoyable aspect of your placement?

“The most enjoyable parts of the placement were the opportunities given to me to visit different factories and exhibitions. The visits allowed me to develop my knowledge and understanding of manufacturing and gain a real appreciation of different design considerations.

What skills have you gained by completing this placement?

“I’ve gained a better understanding of the design process in practice. I’ve learnt how to identify what kind of testing is needed for certain products and being able to analyse any problems that may occur in the field in order to develop better design solutions. I’ve improved my knowledge about the importance of customer relationships, manufacturing processes and the different variables that can occur during projects depending on the materials used.

“My skills with Solidworks, 3D printing and model making in the workshop have also improved, as has my ability to collaborate with other colleagues by identifying their strengths and weaknesses and using their knowledge and experience to help with particular tasks.”

Tell us a little bit about your career since leaving NTU.

"After leaving NTU I studied a master’s degree at MSc Medical Engineering Design at Keele University, to expand upon what I learnt at NTU. Now I am working at a medical device company Endomag, supporting projects from concept to regulatory approval."

What has been your career highlight so far? How did what you learnt at NTU help you get there?

"My career highlight would be getting into the medical device industry. My ambition is to improve people's quality of life through design. My major project at NTU aligned with my ambition and helped provide a stepping stopped towards my goal."

What is your biggest piece of advice to current students and those graduating this year?

"For current students, I would advise doing an industry placement year. The industry placement will give you the opportunity to figure out what you like, what you don't like for your career and learn a lot from industry professionals.

For those graduating this year, remember when you graduate lot of other people will have the same degree, consider what industry/area you are interested in and how to make yourself stand out. For example, a master’s degree, vocational courses, internships etc."

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