Case study

Siobhan Kelly — Process engineer:

Employer
Shell

Through completing an internship at Shell Siobhan secured a graduate position in her final year of university. Upon finishing her degree she went travelling for a few months before returning to Shell to start her career

How did your 12-week Assessed Internship Programme give you an insight into the organisation, the culture, projects and type of work?

I got to work within a team of process engineers out on an operating site, carrying out a number of projects that gave me the chance to work with people from across the refinery.

By working as a member of the team, attending meetings, and collaborating with people from all kinds of disciplines and backgrounds, I got great exposure to the type of work that goes on at an operating site and the working culture at Shell.

What type of work did you do during your internship?

I was lucky enough to have a few really interesting projects to work on. One involved taking plant data and doing computer simulations to look at ways of optimising operations. Another involved getting out on-site with operators and technicians to assess how certain equipment was operating. I also focused on lab data analysis and looked at ways to take advantage of new lab testing techniques to improve the way we monitor the plant.

What can students expect in the various stages of the Assessed Internship Programme?

Over the course of the internship, we undertook on boarding activities and got to know our teams and our projects. We then spent the majority of the time working towards meeting our project deliverables, as well as taking part in other learning opportunities as they arose.

Towards the end of the internship, we put together presentations on the work we had carried out to present to our fellow interns and leaders from across the business, as well as assessors.

In the assessed interview we had the opportunity to show how we had met the Shell CAR (Capacity, Achievements and Relationship) criteria through our project experiences.

How would you describe your experience of the Shell internship?

I loved my time as an intern. I had wonderful supervisors and mentors, and other staff from across the site were always happy to take the time to answer questions, assist with projects, or teach me about different aspects of the business. It was completely eye-opening in terms of getting to see and experience first-hand the kind of opportunities that were available as a graduate chemical engineer. I would definitely encourage anyone with the slightest interest in a career in energy to apply for a Shell internship.

How did Assessed Internship Programme prepare you for your career and how did it feel knowing you had secured a graduate position before graduation?

Being able to spend three months in a professional environment, learning to work within and across multidisciplinary teams, and having specific project deliverables and targets to meet, was a fantastic preparation for a professional engineering career.

Knowing that I had a graduate job already secured was an enormous relief that allowed me to enjoy my final year, and a few months of travelling, before I came back to start as a graduate.

Did your internship provide you with an advantage when starting the Graduate Programme?

I think having completed an internship was a massive advantage and allowed me to hit the ground running as a graduate. I had the opportunity to experience the Shell culture, the collaborative ways of working, the high standards of HSSE (Health, Safety, Security and Environment) and many of the Shell systems beforehand. This meant I had a few friendly faces in the corridor on day one.

Describe what makes Shell’s Assessed Internship Programme unique?

You’re given specific and meaningful projects to complete, with formally assigned support systems in the form of supervisors, mentors and buddies.

Why should today’s students apply for an assessed internship with Shell?

They’ll get the opportunity to see up close how a company like Shell operates, to learn from some of the best people in the energy industry and give themselves a huge advantage when it comes to obtaining a graduate role.

What advice can you give to students applying for an internship, and how would you encourage them to put their best foot forward?

Treat your internship application like an application for a graduate position because that’s where it could take you.

My internship at Shell was one of the best experiences I had at university and it has shaped where the rest of my career will take me.

Find out more