Graduate profile of the month

Congratulations to all graduating from Loughborough University this week!

Get inspired and have a look at our graduate profiles to see what happened next for our graduates and what advice they can offer to you.

July’s profiles is Martyn Tobin. Martyn graduated in 2014 with a BSc DIS Air Transport Management. He is now a Graduate Consultant at Tracsis plc.

 Martyn TobinYour background:

Before attending Loughborough University to study Air Transport Management I worked part time in various retail outlets whilst studying at New College Swindon to obtain the necessary UCAS points.

I’ve always had a passion for flying and subsequently at the age of 17 I obtained my National Private Pilot’s License. The experiences I gained from my flying and volunteering at my local airfield gave me an appreciation of the aviation industry. As such, I began to research future careers and University courses within this field whilst attending college.

Where are you now?

I graduated from Loughborough University in July 2014 where upon I joined Tracsis Plc as a Graduate Consultant. Tracsis is a leading provider of strategic and operational planning to the rail and bus industry with offices in Derby and Leeds. Since joining the consultancy team I’ve been given many opportunities to get stuck into a variety of projects for clients such as Network Rail, National Express Coaches and Train Operating Companies.

How did you get there?

The Air Transport Management degree at Loughborough University includes a one-year placement opportunity after completion of Year 2. After applying for a variety of placements, I was successful in joining the Train Planning Department at First Capital Connect. During my placement I gained first-hand experience of a working Train Operating Company.

Upon my return to complete my final year, I chose to study the Rail Operations module, which was taught by a visiting industry professional. During this module, the lecturer offered careers advice; as well as forwarding by details to Tracsis.

Prior to attending an interview with Tracsis, I utilised the Careers and Employability Centre at Loughborough University for advice on my interview technique, which included a mock interview. The advice they provided was invaluable in securing the position.

Where are you going?

After completion of my degree at Loughborough University and being fortunate to have a fantastic job at Tracsis, I aim to continue my professional education by studying an MSc part-time. My long-term aspiration is to hold a senior management position within the industry.

What if anything would you have done differently during your time at Loughborough University to help you prepare better for your career/life upon graduation?

During my time at Loughborough University, I struggled with some of the statistical modules in my degree. However, if I had my time again at Loughborough I would have utilised the support services during my first and second year. During my final year, with this support, my grade increased by 10%.

What advice would you give now to a student studying your subject at university now?

Although studying at Loughborough University is fun and relaxed, it’s very important to keep reminding yourself of your aspirations. My key advice would be:

  • Attend all classes and that includes tutorials.
  • Make use of the facilities such as the Careers and Employability Centre.
  • Join the LSU Transport society ‘Velocity’. This society provided me with some fantastic opportunities including access to private tours around Bombardier and Airbus. In addition to the educational and networking benefits, you also meet likeminded individuals.

Train as an RE Teacher

Train as an RE Teacher – the career choice for individuals looking for an exhilarating and stimulating challenge.

The Government has reintroduced training bursaries this year – up to £9,000 for individuals with a first or a PhD – and we are hoping to increase awareness of this and help reverse the drop in numbers of people advancing to study for a PGCE as an RE specialist.

You don’t need to have a theology degree.  And while subject requirements do vary according to the PGCE course provider, graduates may still be able to train as an RE teacher and qualify for a bursary if their subject is one of the following: Cultural Studies, Law, Anthropology, Psychology, Sociology, History, Philosophy, Politics, Social Policy, Humanities, or Criminology.  There are also a number of development courses available to boost subject knowledge, including the online booster course at

RE teachers come from all sorts of backgrounds and all walks of life.  There is no single preferred set of beliefs that they share.  And in fact many don’t have any religious faith, just a fascination with people and the world we live in.  The Religious Education Council for England and Wales – which is leading the campaign to increase trainee numbers – includes the British Humanist Society as an active member.

Life as an RE specialist is exhilarating.  What could be more challenging or stimulating as a room of teenagers discussing the big life issues? Witnessing the wow moments as young people quite literally develop and grow in front of you and because of you.  And at the same time developing and nurturing them to be effective members of their own communities and society at large.

Despite the drop in teacher numbers in recent years, numbers of students have grown:

  • entries to the full course GCSE have gone up 19% in England and Wales since 2012
  • GCSE RE now attracts more entries than any other subjects after Maths, English and Sciences
  • A-level entries have also increased more than any arts, humanity or social science subject over the past 10 years

For more information, please see


Graduate Q&A: How to Get into the Product Development Industry

Ally Ward, a graduate from Loughborough University, answers questions about a typical day in his job, work experience, career progression, and how you can get into the industry. sagentia

He works at Sagentia, a global science, technology and product development services company.

Can you give us a bit of background on yourself? How long have you been working at Sagentia? What is your position there?

I studied a BEng in Product Design Engineering at Loughborough University. This combined materials science, mechanical engineering, engineering science, and industrial design. It was a great course for getting a solid understanding of different areas.

In my second year, I took part in the group product design project, the brief of which had been set by Sagentia. I didn’t know that product development consultancies existed at the time; in fact, as a student, I didn’t know where I saw myself after graduation.

With a bit of research into Sagentia, I discovered that they operate across a number of sectors. I decided to apply for a placement and was accepted after an interview process.

I spent my placement year working as part of the mechanical systems & design team, and was then offered a permanent position following completion of my degree. I’ve now been working at the company for 3 years and have progressed from Engineer to Consultant level.

What is a typical day like for you?

There genuinely isn’t a ‘typical’ day here. There is a huge variety both in terms of the types of tasks I do and the sectors for which I design products.

One day I might be working on designing a novel drug delivery system, and the next day developing a surgical instrument, or improving a manufacturing process for a global consumer product.

Generally, though, my role includes things like using CAD to design concept prototypes, test rigs, and ultimately deliver the final product to the client. All of these involve in-depth design reviews and technical problem solving.

I often work directly with clients around the world to understand their needs and present them with concepts and prototypes. Each project team is made up of people from different disciplines, so I’m working with a mixture of chemists, mathematicians, electrical engineers, physicists, and industrial designers, amongst others.

Did you always know this career path was for you?

No, I initially wanted to be a physiotherapist! It was at secondary school that I realised how much I enjoyed design technology, which led me to study engineering at university.

Did you gain relevant work experience during your time studying?

I decided to do a one year placement in my third year and would definitely recommend this to other students. Having the opportunity to experience how the industry works and apply what you’ve learnt at university is invaluable.

It really helped me both in my final year of studying and obviously when I started work after graduating.

What is the most challenging thing about your job?

In a consultancy environment, it’s probably balancing time, cost and value for the client. You need to understand what the client wants and be able to adapt to their changing requirements.

At Sagentia we’re working on cutting edge technologies and products, so as engineers we constantly have to challenge ourselves and our clients, pushing the boundaries of what can be done, or thinking differently about how we can apply existing ideas to new areas.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

It has to be the variety of projects I get to work on, though I also love the satisfaction you get from delivering a successful project to a client. There is a great sense of pride when designs that you have produced work as required and meet the client’s needs.

Over time it would be amazing to see some of my designs in the public eye, and with a lot of my work being in the medical sector I like to think that, on some level, I am helping people too.

Beyond that, I like the people and the company culture. You’re supported by an amazing group of people who encourage you to think outside the box, which often benefits your designs. I genuinely feel like I’m learning something new every day.

What is your career progression path like?

Sagentia has a graduate scheme that supports your development when you join from University. At a graduate level you get the chance to try lots of different things and really discover what you’re good at.

Since joining I’ve progressed to the Consultant level and am now focusing on getting a broad range of technical knowledge and experience, to enable me to design products for different industries.

Looking ahead, I intend to follow a technical career path, focusing on delivering projects to clients, as that is what I really enjoy. There are also opportunities to go down other routes, such as project management or commercial.

Do you have any advice for students who are looking to get into the industry?

Getting undergraduate experience is invaluable, so I’d definitely recommend a placement if you get the opportunity. I also think that doing relevant projects outside of your studies, which show your passion for product design and engineering, will help when it comes to applying for jobs in this industry.

It is always impressive when you see students come in with their own Kickstarter project or a well-documented portfolio, whether that is undergraduate work or personal projects. Those sorts of things usually speak volumes about the candidate.

Visit the Sagentia website to learn more about graduate career opportunities, development and current vacancies.





Graduate profile of the month

January’s profile is Henry Dunmore. Henry graduated in 2013 with a BSc in Politics and minor subject. He is now set up his own company, LunchBox abc


Your background:

I took a GAP year, before university, to travel, before getting back into education. I did Politics mainly because I was interested in the subject, both at school and in general and didn’t really know what I wanted to do after university, in terms of employment. I therefore wanted to spend my time at university studying something I enjoyed rather than a means to an end e.g. Accountancy.

Where are you now?

After graduating from Loughborough I spent some time working for a catering company, during the summer,while doing numerous job applications. It was then that I came up with my business idea of selling healthy and nutritionally designed ‘LunchBoxes’ to busy ‘on-the-move’ gym members in London. The concept revolved around the boredom of healthy dieting and eating the same foods day in, day. This is why the menu changes on a daily basis and includes a different meat, fish and vegetarian option. After writing a business plan, securing some investment and agreeing a contract with London’s Premier Healthclub, The Third Space, I started selling LunchBoxes in October.

Continue reading

JSPS Summer Programme 2015

Application Deadline: Thursday 15th January 2015 Fellowship to take place during fixed period: 9 June to 19 August 2015

The JSPS Summer Programme provides the opportunity for current MPhil or PhD students to receive a one week orientation on Japanese culture and research systems on arrival and then move to a host institution in Japan of their choice and approved by JSPS, to conduct collaborative research activities for 2 months during the summer.

Value of award: Return international airfare, maintenance allowance (534,000, JPY), research support allowance(158,500 JPY) and overseas travel and accident insurance policy are provided.

Eligibility: Applicants must be a British national and a current MPhil or PhD student based at a UK university or research institution at the point of April 2015. Eligible research fields are not limited.

Applications should be sent to the British Council Tokyo. Application guidelines and form are available on their website here:


2014 Graduates – Careers and job search support still available

Are you are still looking for a graduate job, or postgraduate study, and would like further help?

I am working with 2014 graduates and can offer support in areas such as career planning, job search, feedback on your CV or your answers to application form questions, and interview preparation.

If you would like some careers help then do email me, Vicky Parkin at, and we can make an appointment (either face-to-face or by phone) to discuss how I can help. Just include your name, email address and telephone number, say that you are a 2014 graduate, and indicate what help you would like.

Are you passionate about chemistry? Do you want to inspire the next generation of chemists?

Our £25,000 Teacher Training Scholarships are for trainees with the potential to become exceptional chemistry teachers.

Does that sound like you?

As well as our £25,000 Scholarship, you could get:

  • free Royal Society of Chemistry membership for two years;
  • chemistry-specific Continuing Professional Development sessions;
  • access to our national and regional support networks;
  • mentoring from an expert chemistry teacher; and
  • a selection of classroom materials, like books, posters and lab coats.

Our Scholarships are open to any chemistry teacher trainees training in England.

The next deadline for applications is 7 December 2014

Learn more about our scholarships, discover what happens on the scholarship assessment day and find out how we celebrate our scholars’ success in these videos.

Video 1

Video 2

Video 3

Find out if you meet our criteria and how to apply. We also have links to helpful information about teaching as a career.


Bombardier’s Global Graduate Program is an integrated global and boundary-less development program preparing passionate and talented individuals for a future role within our company. Its long-term purpose is to fill Bombardier Transportation’s future global talent pipeline as a key element of our competitive foundation for great talent globally.

The program consists of three assignments of six months each and allows you to work on Bombardier’s railway projects in Europe and possibly worldwide. You will gain an in-depth understanding of established processes, systems and tools,
work on assigned projects and contribute to business success at an early stage. Global_Graduate_2015_DINA4_Flyer

The Global Graduate Program starts on September 1st, 2015. The official application period will open on December 1st,
2014 and will close between February and May 2015, depending on the track.

To learn more about the program and
how to apply to different tracks, please follow the link: