Using your degree: physics jobs on Gradcracker

I juts had a look at some of the jobs on and there are some really interesting ones for physics & astronomy graduates/finalists. These include:

  • Chief Electro Optics Technologist with Thales
  • Physical Security Graduate Scheme and Intelligent Mobility and Smart Technologies Graduate Scheme with Atkins
  • Graduate Project Management (Typhoon) in Edinburgh with Leonardo
  • Sustainability Graduate with Mace
  • Finance and Commercial Programme with Siemens
  • Water Resources with United Utilities
  • IOP Teacher Training Scholarships
  • Research & Development (Health) Programme with RB
  • Analytics Graduate with Jaguar LandRover
  • Graduate Specialist and Scientist Programme with Arcadis
  • Grad programmes in Physics, Health Physics and Analytics with Babcock

These are just a few – start exploring for yourself at Gradcracker

Explore – risk analytics & data science

Deloitte are coming to Kings Buildings on 29th October 2pm to talk about the type of work they do in this area (using data and other methods to help assess and mitigate risks for clients) as well as the job opportunities that they have available.

Curious? Come along to find out more.

Sign up through EventBrite at:

Focus on: Arup

Arup are a UK-based, global consulting firm of consulting engineers (think Goldman Sachs of engineering!).  Famously they turned the architects vision of the Sydney Opera House into reality  alongside many other famous projects (Scottish Parliament, Coventry Cathederal, Barbican Centre, London Eye, Angel of the North, Millennium Bridge, Pompidou Centre, City of Manchester Stadium etc…)

  • Graduate vacancies are open now, due to close around 15th November.  They offer summer placements too. (Be aware, in our experience, they are quite slow at getting back to students, so be patient)
  • Some offices are easier to fill than others.  London is popular; apparently Bristol much less so and Whitehaven (nuclear industry) can be a challenge, so students could be strategic!
  • …but choice of office is a partly determined by the role as not all offices have every role.
  • Arup like our students!
  • Ove Arup (founder) gave his “Key Speech” in 1970, but it still guides the values of the company and students should be aware of it and have read over it.
  • They recruit from a surprisingly wide number of UoE subjects: (e.g) Acoustics, Animation, Archaeology, Business Studies, Chemistry, Criminology, Ecology, Engineering (all disciplines), Enviro Science, IT/Informatics, Maths, Physics, Psychology, Public Health, Social Policy, Zoology… and others!  Go to and scroll down to Filter vacancies by subject.
  • In some subjects/offices they will sponsor international students, but it depends on the competition and the student.

Online chats

Arup sent us the following email yesterday…

I was hoping you may be able to make your students aware of an online chat platform that we’re using at Arup this year as part of our graduate scheme and placement (summer and industrial) application process.

Every Tuesday and Thursday between 13:30 – 15:00 we will be hosting 1 to 1 live chats for students who are interested in finding out more about Arup, application processes, current projects, whatever they can think of! They will be connected to a member of our Early Careers team and will be able to chat to them on a 1 to 1 basis allowing our team to focus their complete attention on each individual student and also discuss an sensitive matters.

Students can sign up to the sessions using the following links:

Tuesday –

Thursday –

Physics to graduate propulsion engineer at Skyrora

Nicola Walker, graduate propulsion engineer at Skyrora tells us about her role. Skyrora will be on campus at the Careers in Engineering Fair on 30th October

I studied at the University of Glasgow, where I completed an integrated Masters degree in Physics with Astrophysics. While my degree did have a focus on space, it was not based on practical industry applications and was almost entirely theory based. This made it difficult to work out exactly what roles I was qualified for when I first graduated, as I believed I was not adequately prepared for a lot of the hands-on roles I was interested in compared to the many engineers out there.

I was not originally set on being an engineer. From studying astronomy subjects at university, I knew that I had a keen interest in space and the many developments ongoing in the industry. At first, I assumed I would pursue a career in academia, studying astronomy in more detail and eventually becoming a researcher full-time. However, I was slightly hesitant over starting a PhD at the time, feeling like I was going through the motions more than really wanting to pursue one.

I left university not having a real idea what to do, or what kind of job I wanted. I just knew that I would prefer to be working in the space industry, as other industry areas just didn’t feel as exciting or as applicable to my degree. I got incredibly lucky while searching for space related jobs a month after I graduated, finding a Junior Engineer position at Skyrora on a Scottish space sector website.

As a graduate propulsion engineer at a start-up, my responsibilities have varied widely since I started. If there is an engineering project ongoing, you can expect to contribute to it to some degree even if it’s not directly in your department. Currently, I am designing a pressure test chamber that we can use onsite as part of our engine tests. It involves setting out a project outline, detailing the requirements and scope of the project, and ensuring that it will withstand any eventualities that can occur during pressure testing. I have also been heavily involved in purchasing, trying to bring costs down for expensive projects while maintaining inventories of all incoming and outgoing items. Working for the start-up means that you have a range of responsibilities and have direct input in ongoing projects.

Your School needs YOU!

I highlighted recently at UG inductions the success that School of Physics & Astronomy students have had in the IBM Universities Business Challenge over the last three years.  Our team Maxwell’s Angels came 4th last year out of more than 300 UK university teams, most of whom were from university business schools. It would be great to repeat that success.

  • It’s the world’s longest established simulation-based competition designed to develop undergraduate employability and enterprise skills.
  • It’s an analytical, problem-solving series of challenges where teams from across UK compete to get to the final in London (the School paid travel and accommodation expenses).
  • I match you up with an industry mentor (I have three lined up already including one from DataLab)
  • it’s a great experience for your CV and a chance to develop personally and professionally. More details here
  • It’s open to undergraduate students from years 2 – 5.  You can have a mixed-year group if you want
  • I need 5 in each team, ideally all from physics and astronomy, but if there is a friend or flatmate you want to have in your team, we can have one non-SoPA student in the team.
  • Please submit details of your team members (name, matric number, year of study) and a nominated team leader (purely for administrative purposes) and email to me
  • If you don’t have a full team, just submit your details (name, matric number, year of study) and I will put a composite group together

I would like to have teams finalised ASAP so I can submit before the deadline on Mon 14 Oct. I will be in touch to let you know if you have been successful this year.