Case study

Flight test engine management engineer — Rob Gilbert

Having completed an engineering internship during his degree, Rob went on to work for the same company on graduation. Find out more about his role at the leading edge of jet engine technology

What degree did you study?

I graduated with an MEng Materials Science and Engineering from The University of Manchester in 2012.

How did you get your job?

I completed a 12-month internship at Rolls-Royce as part of my Masters. After graduation I joined Rolls-Royce on their graduate scheme and completed rotations around the company, before moving into a more flight test focused role.

How relevant is your degree?

My degree gave me the foundation of problem-solving skills and engineering knowledge that I pull on every day, allowing me to decipher challenges that enable aircraft to fly.

What's a typical working day like?

A typical day involves organising and supporting flight test campaigns, reviewing test results and developing technology solutions to support the certification of jet engines.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Working at the very cutting edge of different technologies is unbelievably exciting. The variety and challenges of the role mean that I never know what might happen when I get into the office each day - this makes it a unique and rewarding job.

What are the challenges?

The biggest challenge is trying to move jet engine technology forward beyond the boundaries of what we currently think is possible, at a pace which meet the needs of a changing world.

Where do you hope to be in five years?

I hope to be leading teams that are developing propulsion technologies that we don't even think are possible right now.

What advice can you give to others?

  • Don't be afraid to try new things and get outside of your comfort zone; that's where you learn about yourself the most.
  • Having an engineering degree gives you a great fundamental foundation, but it does not determine your job - instead it opens up doors to an unbelievable amount of opportunities across almost every sector you can imagine. You've then got to find out what excites you and what you want to do every day.
  • Be curious, ask questions and don't accept the status quo.

Find out more

How would you rate this page?

On a scale where 1 is dislike and 5 is like

success feedback

Thank you for rating the page