How to write effective CVs, cover letters and applications: online prep sessions just for you

I’ll be running some online sessions for you on Wed 25th October

  • CVs & covering letters – for Physics & Astronomy students only (online via Collaborate)-  1pm

Whether it’s applying for jobs or further study, this online session will help you understand some key elements to include in your CVs & covering letters.

  • Online applications – for Physics & Astronomy students only (online via Collaborate) –  2pm

This online session will help you understand key approaches to completing online applications.

You can sign up for these on MyCareerHub events, just search for physics

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Focus on nuclear: growth & diversity

The Nuclear Institute is the professional body and learned society for the nuclear industry, covering both the civil and defence nuclear sectors. The website has a good introduction to the industry.  This is a growth areas especially in quality and safety roles.

UK_Nuclear_Industry_cover

They host the Nuclear Institute Young Generation Network, an ever-expanding group of young nuclear professionals with a platform for networking, education and career development. They also promote Women in Nuclear UK, set up to:

  • Attract more women to choose a career in the nuclear sector
  • Support retention and career progression of women in the industry

This is part of Women in Nuclear Global (WiN Global),  a world-wide non-profit making association of women working professionally in various fields of nuclear energy and radiation applications. Membership includes women and men working professionally in medicine and health care, in regulatory authorities, in industry and as independent researchers.

Opportunities at CERN

Great to see so many of you at the CERN event last week.

They have sent on their short video which gives a  flavour of life at CERN and also highlights their opportunities for undergraduates, graduates and PhD students

CERN video

They have more information here on their different programmes

Summer programme Student Blog  Summer Students programme

Summer Student webpage

Technical Programme Student Blog:  Technical Student programme

Technical Student webpage (with video):

General link to student programmes   student programmes

 

Physics to financial software

 Physics graduate Owen McBrearty shares what he does in a professional data analytics organisation, how he got there and what it’s like at AquaQ Analytics.

Owen AquaQ cropped AquaQ Analytics will be at day 2 of the Careers Fair on Wed 11th October. Owen will be also joining me at my Physics drop-in on Thursday 12 October, 12 – 1.30pm outside the Magnet Cafe, JCMB.         Drop by for an informal chat!

I work for AquaQ Analytics as a Graduate Financial Software Developer. AquaQ is a new company which offers support and software development for various clients, like hedge funds and investment banks, by providing them with tailor-made programs and code which suit their needs. This is where I, and the other developers like me come in.

The client tells us that they need to do a certain task – perform analysis on data, gather and store information, etc – and it’s up to us to write the code that fits their brief. 9 times out of 10, the best code for the job is written in kdb+, which the employees of AquaQ excel in. And it’s not just the financial sector where kdb+ excels. With the recent announcement that NASA have begun using kdb+ for their projects, you can be certain that the need for kdb+ developers is on the rise.

How did I get here?

I came from an applied physics background – in fact, I’ve just completed a 4-year BSc in National University of Ireland Galway. Through this course I gained many skills that I knew would be useful in a professional setting, but the decision remained as to what to do once I graduated. So, as I came to the end of my degree, I took a step back and asked myself, “What aspects of this course did I like, and what aspects do I want to keep using?” To me, the answer was clearly the analytics aspect of the course – taking a set of data and performing analysis on it to get useful information. I began looking for work in a field that would allow me to develop new skills, while making use of the skills I already had.

Application and interview – preparation and process

After a few days searching, I decided to look for work in Northern Ireland, and quickly found a listing on nijobs.com. “STEM Graduates Required for Jobs in Financial IT sector”. After leaving my CV and cover letter on the website I was contacted by a recruiter, and after a few telephone interviews they arranged an interview for me with AquaQ. To prepare for this interview, I began reading up on the basics of financial trading. I taught myself about bonds and other fixed income types, and a bit about foreign exchange and how currencies vary with respect to one another. On the programming side of things, I revised the coding I had done in my time in university – while I wasn’t expected to know kdb+ I could still keep myself fresh on the concepts I had learned.

At the interview, I was quizzed on my final year project,my grades and my knowledge of coding and fixed income trading. The interviews were conducted in a professional, but relaxed environment, and after a two-stage interview process and a kdb+ challenge I was contacted with a job offer.

(AquaQ are currently recruiting on MyCareerHub)

Company culture and progression

A few weeks later I started as a developer, and was blown away by how welcoming and open the staff in AquaQ were. This isn’t one of those businesses where management are on some abstract floor upstairs – instead management are working in the same area as the rest of the employees and everyone is ready to help & bring you up to speed on what it means to be a member of the AquaQ team.

The training you receive is second-to-none, and any skills you’ve developed, either in an academic or extra-curricular setting, are allowed to grow so that your skillset grows while the company expands. After 5 weeks you are ready to be sent out to clients. In fact, I’ve just begun work for an investment bank in the US and hope to be sent to London in a few weeks’ time.

So, if you want a career in a professional data analytics environment, with friendly co-workers, state-of-the-art training and enviable travel options, AquaQ Analytics may just be the perfect environment for you!

Careers in data science event

P & G

Procter & Gamble will hold a presentation & information session on careers in data science at Kings Buildings.

Representatives will talk about how Analytics & Insights drives P & G’s business decisions. The session also gives you the opportunity for questions and valuable insights into career options in this area

Monday 9th October, 1 – 2pm Details and signup on MyCareerHub

 

IBM Universities Business Challenge (IBM UBC)

I mentioned this at inductions and we are now taking names for teams this year. This is a business simulation challenge that our team of physicists did brilliantly in last year, winning 3rd place out of 300 UK teams (many of them from Business Schools).

Fidel Elie,  Ziyi Zhang,  Adamos Spanashis,  Brandon Christman,  Imran MarwatIBM UBC final all 5

If you want to know  more you can check out the overview , the student participant guide. and timetable

If you’d like to be part of one of the two teams we want to submit, please contact Judy Hardy or Rosie Edwards in the School asap.  They will submit names to me and I have to register them on the UBC site before 24 October.  I also need each team to nominate a team leader.  Each team can have up to five team members.  It’s a great experience to be part of and brilliant for your CV.

Here’s how team member Ziyi Zhang reflected on the Challenge:

 “Thank you for being at the competition and supporting us throughout this experience. I realized studying physics not only made us “book smart” but also taught us critical and logical thinking which can be applied beyond academics”

Get in touch with Imran and his team – they’d be happy to tell you about their experience.

Looking for MSc funding?

My colleague in our Information Team, June Maguire has highlighted this funding:

We’re seeing quite a few students still looking for funding. Some of these are Masters students who’ve came from other universities, and they haven’t heard about the postgraduate student loans that have now been introduced in all parts of the UK.

Thought it was worth sending a reminder about this funding as students can still apply for it (unlike most other funding e.g. research councils, where the next round of funding will be for 2018/19 courses). For example, if you are eligible for funding by SAAS (the Scottish funding body), you can apply for funding up until the end of March 2018. The loans are up to £10,000 pounds, with up to £5,500 for fees and the rest for living costs.

Each country has its own system, and there are some significant differences in the level of courses funded, as well as the repayment systems. You’ll find comprehensive guides to these loans and how to apply here.

Students will also find information and links to the guides/application info on our website. We can also direct them to the funding section of our website to access other useful sources. Some examples:

Edinburgh 4 Learning, online portal for current students, undergraduate and postgraduate, providing details of funding opportunities available to support you through your studies. You must register with your university email address to access this database.

Research Professional – a vast, up-to-date database of research-based funding opportunities, including doctoral and postdoctoral awards, travel and conference grants, prizes, and hardship grants, and news about research policy. Staff and students of the University may register free of charge (email address must end @ed.ac.uk) to access the databases, receive daily email updates and alerts, and save interesting items and searches.

More details here

Curious about Analytics & Technology?

BlackRock are running an event on Monday for STEM students. It will be on MyCareerHub but it’s short notice so I thought I’d give you a heads-up. Here’s what it’s about:

“In vast oceans of data, we seek the insights that can change outcomes. We dig deep to find the numbers behind the numbers and leverage our technology to provide solutions to our clients. Join us at our Edinburgh office to find out more about the Aladdin Client Service and Technology divisions and the opportunities available in these teams.

Discover Analytics & Technology @ BlackRock
When: Monday 2nd October 2017
Where: Edinburgh (travel expenses reimbursed)
Eligibility: You must be in your first, second, third or final year (SH/MPhys) studying a STEM degree at a Scottish University.
Register: Register and apply for your space at careers.blackrock.com/campusrecruitment

Where are all the science jobs?

Interesting post from my colleague Elizabeth at the University of Manchester

University of Manchester Careers Blog

whereareallthesciencejobsIf you’re a science student who loves science, it can sometimes feel like all the jobs are for business students, engineers or computer scientists. This is to reassure you that there are ways of finding science jobs – if you know where to look.

Two alternatives are:

a) Look for science jobs which are being advertised

  • The pros – you know there is a job to be filled
  • The cons – so do lot of other people, so the competition will be high

b) Look for scientific employers and see if they have any jobs

  • The pros – they may have jobs to be filled, but if a job isn’t available now, they may keep you on file; this means that when a vacancy does occur, they may contact you before even considering advertising, so there is less competition
  • The cons – they may not be recruiting when you need…

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