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Au revoir Killian! Looking back on another successful technical placement programme

Central to Optimax’s mission to support continued innovation in metrology and inspection is our commitment to train the next generation of experts. We are so proud of our technical placement program and consistently inspired by the skill and drive of our new team members.

Placement students provide essential support for our team, taking on real, client facing work. They also offer a crucial outside view point for Optimax, challenging our processes to improve.

We have a long standing relationship with Caen University in France, offering a ten week work experience placement to a student from their Metrology Course. Catching up with Killian, our latest placement student, we find out how the programme accelerated his professional development.

What inspired you to join the Optimax placement programme?

I wanted to gain exposure to engineering and manufacturing and build practical experience in metrology. I also wanted to discover another culture and improve my language skills. I had only come to England twice before and just on academic trips. I expected the weather would be bad [he gestures to a very grey June sky] but when I first started it was actually pretty sunny - though that seemed to surprise everyone in the office!

What have you learnt during your placement?

I have really seen the whole sales, implementation and servicing cycle in practice. While I was given the opportunities of a structured programme, I have also enjoyed the flexibility to pursue my own interests. I spent half of my time in the office and half in the workshop or out on-site with engineers. In the office I learnt all of the customer care systems and now fully understand how important it is that machines are calibrated to the highest level for clients. I also improved my practical and technical skills in the workshop, helping with the servicing of machines, making brackets and fixtures and stripping the machine down.

Of course, I’ve also learnt some very useful English phrases from the team, like ‘Swings and Roundabouts’ and ‘Spuds'.

What are you going to miss most?

The team, definitely. I have really enjoyed being part of such a friendly and supportive work culture. In France we don’t have the same kind of active company culture so it was nice to be in an office that ate lunches and went out together.

I’ll also miss Market Harborough, it’s a beautiful town with lots to do, and the people are so relaxed and friendly. I cycle to work every day and have really enjoyed walking around the local area. 

What are you going to do next?

I will return to university and then my plan is to work as an engineer with a focus on optics. I have built up so much essential experience which will drive forward my career. I will definitely visit the UK again, perhaps for another work placement. 

Would you recommend this programme?

Absolutely - it was such an incredible experience and I am so thankful to everyone for making my time here so special. 

We will all miss Killian here at Optimax. The placement programme has given Killian valuable skills and experience to launch his career, along with exposure to the wide range of opportunities in engineering. Throughout, he took on real responsibility, worked with industry defining technology and sector leading companies. We are proud to have supported Killian to build a strong foundation for his future career. 

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