Each year we take on a select few engineering students and graduates to share our knowledge and give them a hands on experience of what we do. It is a tough but rewarding programme that allows students to take the theory they are learning in college and put it into practise. Over the coming weeks we will speak to our current students who are coming to the end of their internship. We ask what they have learnt, what they’ll take away from the experience and what is in store for them next. We kick off with John Doherty who is studying Electrical & Electronic Engineering in Technological University Dublin.
Why did you choose to apply to Premium Power for your engineering internship?
I chose Premium Power due to my interest in electrical power and protection. Having previously worked as an Electrical Services Engineer, I found this area to be the most relevant to my past experience. I had heard from past interns with Premium Power that the company gave students the opportunity to engage in a wide variety of projects and to work as an individual and as part of a team, and having real responsibilities within the team. Getting the chance to work on large scale projects and to participate in the drafting of professional grade reports was an exciting prospect.
How do you find working at Premium Power, do you enjoy it?
From day one at Premium Power I felt like a part of the team and organization, the staff were extremely friendly and welcoming. The training delivered by the engineers was excellent and very concise, and I was up and running within a week assisting with projects and starting to work independently on some tasks.
What would you say are the key things you’re learning?
I’ve learned a lot about electrical protection and safety, expanding on what I had previously learned in my career especially with regard to the risks posed by Arc Flash incidents. On top of this I am gaining exposure to many new software packages such as SKM Powertools, Dranview and Plangrid.
How does your experience compare to the theory being taught in college – what's it like to get to grip with real projects on the ground?
It’s great to see some of the theory in practice, and to see how it’s applied in real life situations. The experience and technical knowledge shown by the team at Premium Power was really impressive, and showed that while I have a lot more to learn in University, it’s really in the workplace when that knowledge gets developed fully and where people become specialized in their area of work.
Has your experience changed where you plan on taking your engineering career?
I am extremely keen to continue to work in the power industry and working for Premium Power has exposed me to a new level of Electrical Engineering and with my previous consultancy experience I am now even more motivated to continue to develop my skills and knowledge in order to take part in the design and study of complex electrical power systems.
How have you found working during a pandemic?
The current global pandemic is greatly affecting how people around the world in many industries are working, and how they will work in the future. Thankfully, Premium Power had a very sophisticated IT system in place which allowed staff to work from home with minimal disruption to a normal working week. Everything that was needed from laptops to monitors was provided to staff to take home. Files and project documents were already stored on a secure, cloud-based system and the company uses project management software to assign and track projects and tasks to employees.
What would you say to other students and graduates who are thinking of applying to work at Premium Power?
The same thing that was said to me, working for Premium Power will be more like working as an Engineer in a team than working as an Intern. You will have the chance to work on live projects; assisting lead engineers with analysis, coordinating with other engineers, and receiving mentorship on drafting of reports to be delivered to clients. This will stand out on your CV when you apply to jobs in the future, and you will be able to expand on the experiences you gain with Premium Power in future interviews.