Putting your studies into practice with a placement year

18 November 2021

Employers often look for workplace experience as part of their recruitment process and many make graduate offers to students as a direct result of placements so this can be a great way to kick start your career!

Find out the reasons why our undergraduate students decided to take a placement year as part of their course and how you can put your studies into practice whilst learning about a particular industry.

Shachi’s placement year at Disney

Shachi Banthia, BSc Management

“I started my journey at Warwick as a BSc Management student. I was unsure whether I should study or work abroad for my third year and therefore I decided to book an appointment with the WBS CareersPlus team to find out more about my options. Disney is a well-recognised organisation and at WBS I was always told to make the most of the opportunities that arise. Three days after visiting the Disney offices for my interview, I received a feedback call and I was given a 12-month placement offer, which I accepted on the spot!

In the first six months of my internship, I had a lot of exposure conducting promotions and partnerships with a range of well-known companies to increase brand awareness. This involved a lot of cross-functional responsibilities as I worked closely with the marketing, creative and finance functions of the business. Since then I’ve been supporting the growth strategy by developing pricing benchmarks, conducting competitor analysis and evaluating the business proposition. This part of the work has been extremely empowering and we even shared some of our results with the senior management team which was a great experience and I was able to learn so much.”

Discover how Shachi seized the opportunity to put her studies into practice by taking a placement year at Disney >

 Sam’s placement year at L’Oréal

Sam Jeffery, BSc Management

“I gained a love for marketing through the various modules I’d studied throughout my BSc Management course, and it was my passion for marketing that eventually led me to become a marketing intern for CeraVe Skincare at L’Oréal.

At the beginning of my second year at WBS, I began to research the best ways to get an insight into marketing and the potential career paths this interest could lead to. I quickly learned that marketing was a broad discipline, ranging from the creative side of content and product marketing to SEO and digital marketing. The more I discovered about the various business sectors, I became fascinated by fast moving consumer goods (FMCG). The fast-moving environment coupled with the tangibility of marketing efforts in physical goods drove that appeal, influencing my decision to take a placement year and enabling me to focus my applications within this sector.

One of the most exciting projects I was involved with was the launch of the CeraVe Hydrating Cream-to-Foam Cleanser, a new addition to the popular cleansing franchise. With this launch, I was able to experience the freedom of planning promotional activities, defining strategy, and raising awareness around a brand-new product, however also faced the difficulties of persuading current customers to try our new cleanser, and recruiting those following other ‘cult skincare’ brands. Overall, this project was a great success, with the added satisfaction of seeing a product I had helped bring to life, on shelves in store.”

Find out how Sam pursued his passion for marketing by pursuing a placement year at L’Oréal >

Murtaza’s placement year at EYMurtaza Mohammaed, BSc Accounting & Finance student

Murtaza Mohammaed, BSc Accounting & Finance

“During the third year of my BSc Accounting & Finance course, I decided to undertake a placement year and was fortunate enough to secure a 12-month industrial placement at EY in their London office. It was a fantastic experience for me where I could really focus on improving my communication skills, networks, and practical knowledge within the industry allowing me to apply what I had learned during my placement in my final year at WBS.

I would highly recommend a placement year to future students. A placement year enables you to gain first-hand experience of the work sector that you are interested in and by spending a full 12 months in industry you receive full exposure to all aspects of the role.

Thankfully, I really enjoyed my placement year at EY and went on to secure a graduate offer for the same role once I graduated. As a second year graduate at EY, I specialise in the audit of energy sector companies and my client portfolio consists of major oil and gas, petrochemical and renewable companies. I feel that my experience of studying at WBS with such a diverse cohort has really helped me in my current role and will continue to be hugely beneficial throughout the rest of my career.”

Find out how Murtaza’s placement year at EY resulted in a graduate job offer >

Jane’s placement year at GymsharkJane Ashfield, BSc Management student

Jane Ashfield, BSc Management

“At the end of my first year, I decided I wanted to complete a placement as a part of my BSc Management course. I had just completed a summer internship and realised how valuable a placement year would be to further develop my skill set. So in my third year I completed a placement year at Gymshark as a customer insight intern.

The two things I knew before applying for a placement were that I wanted to find a role that played on my creative and analytical skills and that I wanted to work within a company and an industry I was passionate about. Gymshark was at the forefront of my mind when I started looking into companies because when scrolling through their LinkedIn, I felt the culture and ways of working really reflected what I valued.

During my time at Gymshark I got involved in a number of projects which gave me a great overview of how the whole company works. My placement year equipped me with valuable skills in analytics and research which I’m thankful for my team’s continuous coaching and support. With this experience, I feel I really improved my employability prospects for post-graduation. Unsurprisingly, I’d fully advise any undergraduate who is thinking of a placement to go for it (whether it’s a summer internship, a year placement, or both)!”

Discover how Jane utilised her creative and analytical skills during her placement year at Gymshark >

George’s placement year at DysonGeorge Daniells, BSc Accounting & Finance student

George Daniells, BSc Accounting & Finance

“As part of my BSc Accounting & Finance course, I was able to complete a placement year at Dyson which was hugely beneficial and something I would definitely recommend to future students. It enables you to hit the ground running when you start your graduate role, giving you first-hand experience of the working environment. My placement year helped me grow in confidence and gain a clear understanding of finance in the world of business.

I learned so much at Dyson which has been hugely beneficial to me in my future career. I don’t think there was a single day where I didn’t learn something new. In addition to this I was surrounded by lots of very intelligent people who were more than willing to share their knowledge with me. I not only learned about the financial challenges that company’s face, but also the technical challenges that come with creating new technology and research. This enabled me to look at the bigger picture when assessing financial information. I feel that the broad spectrum of modules I studied during my first and second year at WBS enabled me to have an excellent grounding when entering the world of business during my placement year.”

Discover how George’s placement year at Dyson helped prepare him for his future career >

Discover more about our new four year BSc Accounting & Finance with Placement Year and BSc Management with Placement Year courses for 2022 entry by downloading our undergraduate brochure.