It often feels a lot easier to talk to someone of your own age. As an IMechE University Liaison Officer (ULO), I am on hand to answer questions from students about the Institution and help promote membership. While the IMechE’s representatives are available for more detailed information, it can be really helpful for undergrads who are interested in joining to talk directly to student members and find out how it benefits them.
I joined the Institution during the first year of my degree at Loughborough University where I am now in the final year of my MEng Product Design Engineering degree. I got into engineering towards the end of my GCSE’s then was sponsored by BAE Systems during my A Levels. This led to work experience in systems and test and build which helped me narrow down what I wanted to study.
The course has been great and I have been able to develop my passion for motorsport. I spent my placement year as a design engineer at Williams Advanced Engineering where I worked on batteries and high performance vehicles, and became interesting in project process optimization – which I then focused on when writing my dissertation.
I began volunteering as a ULO in my first year after I saw the opportunity advertised. The Institution had been on campus promoting scholarships and membership, and it seemed like a good way of getting involved. There was a lack of understanding of the IMechE and its benefits among other students and I felt that working as a ULO was a great way to help them get a better idea of what the Institution does.
I work with Lara Mallet and Chris Atkins at the IMechE who provide me and other members with materials and support. We advertise IMechE events, scholarships and help other students set up their memberships. We also send out a monthly email newsletter and give talks whenever the IMechE are on campus.
Being a ULO is a flexible way of helping promote the Institution which fits comfortably around my studies - it’s definitely been manageable. The volunteering is certainly a great thing to put on my CV, and it gives you something extra to talk about when applying for scholarships or for competitive work placements. I've also found it great for meeting peers and it has helped with my own personal development too - be that public speaking, running events or communicating with others.