University of Reading cookie policy

We use cookies on to improve your experience, monitor site performance and tailor content to you

Read our cookie policy to find out how to manage your cookie settings


Real-world experience

BSc Computer Science with Industrial Year student, Sonam, has always had a passion for technology and was intrigued by the breadth of career opportunities available in computing and computer-related professions.

“I’d love to be a part of an industry which is consistently changing and evolving. It is also a flexible and multiskilled industry, so you can choose to try different areas over the years.”

With so many careers in computer science to choose from, Sonam was always certain that adding a year-long industry placement to her degree would be beneficial for gaining some professional experience and an insight into working life.

“You can develop skills you’ve learnt in more depth when completing an Industrial Year and gain more technical and soft skills. You also get the opportunity to work with cutting-edge technologies and discover more tools that could help you in your final year of university. And lastly, it does make you more employable after graduating as you will already have one year of professional experience and you will gain many valuable connections through networking.”

Connections with industry

Many international high-technology companies have their UK or European headquarters within a short distance of the University of Reading. These excellent links with industry, enable students, like Sonam, to undertake a short placement as well as, or instead of, a year of professional experience.

“I enjoyed my summer placement a lot. It gave me a better insight about what job roles I liked, which helped me when trying to search for a year placement opportunity.

“It helped me to realise that I love the area of automation and I would read job descriptions for placement opportunities which included this area. As a result of my summer placement, it helped me during the interview process for finding a year placement, as I had work experience to talk about.”

Hands-on experience

Sonam secured a two-part paid industrial year at two different companies to maximise her knowledge and experience of the workplace.

She worked as a Cloud Engineer at UKCloud Ltd for six months, which had a hybrid working environment and was heavily focused on automation. In this role, responsibilities included planning, designing, implementing, managing, and maintaining the cloud infrastructure.

Sonam then worked as a Platform Engineer at SiXworks Ltd for a further six months. Responsibilities included designing, building, and maintaining the technology platforms that support deployment and software.

“I was able to get hands-on experience with automating jobs that were once manually done, and make reusable code for developers, so they do not have to repeat some steps each time when doing development work. I also learnt many technologies and tools which I was never aware of, such as Docker Containers and CICD pipelines, which I now know are very common in any company. Confidence and presenting skills played a large part in my placement year, as you are required to demonstrate your work to a larger group.

“Doing a placement year allowed me to talk to people that have worked in this field for many years. I had great mentors and received great advice on how to start my career after university.”

As a result of her Industrial Year, Sonam has secured a graduate position at SiXworks as a Platform Engineer.

Find out more about industry placements

Rhian Taylor: making an impression on placement

Rhian Taylor
Rhian Taylor experienced work placements that changed her outlook towards her career, and received job offers before graduating.

Rishil Haren: innovation at Vodafone

Rishil Haren
Rishil Haren made a strong impression during his placement in the Innovation Team at Vodafone Business, securing a graduate role at the company.

Jag Shergill: a game-changing placement

Jag Shergill
Jag Shergill secured a year-long internship with Oracle, where he received an innovation award and saw some of his work rolled out company-wide.

Athena SWAN Silver Award
British Computer Society logo