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Thursday, 12 February 2009

Studentgems on TV!

The BBC Working Lunch programme yesterday aired an interview with the Studentgems management and Chris Bamford, a second year Cybernetics student at the University of Reading. Chris was talking about his work experience and employment prospects. Chris was interviewed on the programme after successfully helping design a new cash free vending machine system, as a freelance project, which he found through

Like most students Chris has found working essential to help him support his studies. He registered on hoping to find paid work which would also look good on his CV and he succeeded! In the interview he explains about how initially he only had a relatively small, simple task to complete. Due to the good quality of his work and attitude they asked him to become more involved in the project to the point where he, in his own words, “basically ended up doing pretty much the entire thing!” He goes on to say how valuable the experience has been for him. He was able to gain a real insight into the corporate world, far more so, he says, than friends who have completed internships for big multinationals.

His employer discussed how pleased they were with Chris’s work and professional manner. In addition to being vital in the development of the end product, he successfully participated in and presented to corporate meetings with the management team and investors. Per Hovland, Managing Director of the company describes Chris’s achievements as those of, “the perfect type of student that we need now”, one who knows their subject and can communicate their skills and what they are working on in potentially intimidating situations.

Overall, I would say that any work experience will be beneficial to students and that it is paid should be a given. This is something that is working hard to achieve, as Sue one of the Company's founders explains in the interview. Chris is the perfect example of a student with the necessary skills to complete a job which needed someone who was aware of the latest developments in their field and willing to take on, what was initially only a small job. is the place where students can search for jobs and companies can search for students, enabling more profitable partnerships such as this one to form. Students from every discipline can find work through the site doing jobs ranging from dog walking (not exactly work experience I know, but paid nonetheless) to telesales to photography.

You can watch the programme on the BBC iplayer, or go to this page: to view this particular episode, which will be available until 18th February 2009.

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