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Work experience

  1. Aug 17, 2005 #1
    Hello. I am a year 12 student and everyone around me is currently doing work experience (e.g. people interested in medecine are working in hospitals) and I am obviously interested in a Physics degree and was wondering if anyone could recommend a place for me to do work experience relating to physics.

    Thank you!!!!!!!!!! :smile:
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 18, 2005 #2
    It would help if you told us where you live...

    PL
     
  4. Aug 18, 2005 #3

    brewnog

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    Sounds to me like he's in the UK, but it would help to know wherabouts, since he's unlikely to want to travel too far from home!
     
  5. Aug 18, 2005 #4
    sorry, I'm from the U.K. and I am not a he but a she!
     
  6. Aug 18, 2005 #5
    I can't recommend anywhere since I don't live there. However I wanted to say goodluck and not to worry about it TOO much until 17 or so. Right now a good math eductation (going beyond what you get in school!) will make life much easier in the future!
     
  7. Aug 18, 2005 #6

    brewnog

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    LedZep, sorry about the he-man thing!

    Wherabouts in the UK are you? I doubt you'd want to travel to another area just for a Y12 work experience thing, although I'll admit that finding a physics based placement will be much tougher than, say, an engineering placement.
     
  8. Aug 18, 2005 #7
    I am from the southeast of England. Is there not a general place for me to work that can be found anywhere in the country, like a hospital, rather than a specific sort of company?
    Locrian - u have scared me a lot because you said dont worry about it too much until I'm 17 years old. I am 17 years old!!!!!!! :surprised
     
  9. Aug 18, 2005 #8
    I don't think you can get a job that's closely related to physics unless you have a couple of years uni studies behind you. Sure you could land a job at a hospital or something but it probably would involve just sweeping floors and running errands. Those are physical jobs but probably not in the way you'd like them to be.

    If I was in your place I'd rather buy some good books on the mathematics you'll need and do a bit of self study.
     
  10. Aug 18, 2005 #9

    brewnog

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    You could go and work somewhere like a hospital, but you might find that (especially at 17), they don't let you do anything interesting because it's a real risk, and public/government run places don't like to take such risks. My friends who had placements in hospitals found themselves doing boring paperwork, and not really getting to do anything in labs, or even see inside operating theatres, or even get a feel for what their supervisors did.

    On the other hand, those who had placements at small companies found that supervisors were willing to let them have a go at anything, although they were obviously under close supervision. I did my first placement in Year 10 at an engineering consultancy, and they had me specifying boilers for hospitals, and doing a structural survey on a collapsing railway bridge! My placement in Year 12 was even more involved, I did a complete structural and electrical survey on an old mansion in the Peak District. Obviously, all my work was thorougly checked, but I was actually doing the work! I got cracking references from both of those, and some really useful contacts too.

    Anyway, back to the original question, where to try and get a placement!

    Depending on your field of interest, you could do worse than look in the Yellow Pages for things like material testing labs, forensic labs, and engineering consultancies. These types of things might be more engineering-based than physics, but at your age (and I'm not trying to be condescending here), they might be right up your street, since you haven't really had an option to specialise in engineering yet. And they'd definitely not be your typical 'manufacturing' environment, which most people would agree are more engineering than physics. If you wanted heavily physics based things, have a look around to see if there are any local observatories around, things like that. Ideally, you'd be able to go and shadow a postgrad or postdoc at your local university physics department, but sadly few have the time for this kind of thing. Might be worth a few phone calls though!

    I'll carry on thinking; it's a harder task than one might imagine!
     
  11. Aug 18, 2005 #10

    brewnog

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    inha, I think she's just looking for a short work experience placement, rather than a job.

    Am I right here, LedZep?
     
  12. Aug 18, 2005 #11
    Yes u r!!! and thank u for ur useful advice, now just need to get the confidence and courage to make those phone calls...........
     
  13. Aug 18, 2005 #12

    brewnog

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    Resist the temptation to resort to emails!

    Either ring them up, or write proper letters. If you write letters, phone up the receptionist first to ask for the name of the person to write to, so that you can address your letter to them personally.

    Good luck, let me know how you get on.
     
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