Jake Senior, Physics and Smart Systems (2016)

Degree – Physics and Smart Systems  (2:1)
Graduated - 2016
Current Employment – Software Engineer, The University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre with Boeing (AMRC)

What are your main responsibilities in your current job?

In my current job I am mostly focusing on developing programs in Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) using devices like the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Microsoft Hololens  for use in manufacturing processes and beyond. Within the first month of my job here I was leading my own project to use the Hololens to verify different stages of assembling products.

Which skills are important for your job?

Programming skills are obviously paramount for a software engineer, but my time studying Physics at Keele also equipped me with additional skills that gave me an edge over other applicants coming from a pure Computer Science/Software Engineering background during my job interview. These include being able to critically analyse and identify the salient features of different problems to come up with the best solution, the ability to understand and use of a wide range of mathematical concepts, and the knowledge and understanding of the physical laws that govern the behaviour of different processes. So far I have used Mechanics, Fluid Physics and Electrical Laws in my work or to help others in theirs.

What are the highlights of your job?

The part of my job I enjoy the most, by far, is using and developing programs for the latest emerging technologies such as AR, VR and the Internet of Things. For example, I recently found an Oculus Rift with Touch controllers (a retail price of £500) laying unused in a cupboard and was allowed to take it home for the weekend to try it out! I also enjoy working on a variety of short (2-3 month) projects. Engineers are also given the opportunity to conduct research projects in areas that are particularly interesting to us, with the chance to publish papers and present the results at conferences.

How did you find your current job?

Someone from the AMRC gave a short presentation at the end of a lecture about the work they do and let us know that they had some positions open.

Does your employer have a graduate recruitment scheme?

No, but opportunities for graduates are posted on the AMRC Careers web page (http://www.amrc.co.uk/pages/careers) and there are also opportunities to study for an Engineering Doctorate (similar to a PhD) with the AMRC Industrial Doctorate Centre (http://www.amrc.co.uk/pages/industrial-doctorate-centre).