"Collaborating with people from all kinds of disciplines and backgrounds, I got great exposure to the different kinds of work and the working culture at Shell"

Siobhan Kelly, Process Engineer, Australia
Siobhan Kelly, Process Engineer, Australia

How did your 12-week Assessed Internship Program with Shell give you an insight into Shell as an organization, the culture, projects and type of work?

I got to work within a team of process engineers out on an operating site, carrying out a number of projects that gave me the chance to work with people from across the refinery. By working as a member of the team, attending meetings, and collaborating with people from all kinds of disciplines and backgrounds, I got great exposure to the type of work that goes on at an operating site and the working culture at Shell.

What type of work did you do during your internship; did you have a specific project?

I was lucky enough to have a few really interesting projects to work on. One involved taking plant data and doing computer simulations to look at ways of optimising operations; while another project involved getting out on-site with operators and technicians to assess how certain equipment was operating. Finally, the other focus was around lab data analysis, and looking at ways to take advantage of new lab testing techniques to improve the way we monitor the plant.

How would you describe your experience of the Shell internship? What would you say to students thinking about an internship with Shell?

I absolutely loved my time as an intern; I had wonderful supervisors and mentors, as well as other staff from across the site that were always happy to take the time to answer questions, assist with projects, or just teach me about different aspects of the business. It was completely eye-opening in terms of getting to see and experience first-hand the kind of opportunities that were available as a graduate chemical engineer in this industry. I would definitely encourage anyone with the slightest interest in a career in energy to apply for a Shell internship.

How did your assessed internship prepare you for your career and how did it feel knowing you had secured a graduate position well before your graduation date?

Being able to spend three months in a professional environment, learning to work within and across multidisciplinary teams, and having specific project deliverables and targets to meet, was a fantastic preparation for a professional engineering career. Knowing that I had a graduate position already secured going into my final year of university was an enormous relief that allowed me to enjoy my final year, and a few months of travelling, before I came back to start as a graduate.

By having had the opportunity to experience Shell through an internship, do you think this provided you with an advantage when starting the Graduate Program?

I think having completed an internship was a massive advantage and allowed me to hit the ground running as a graduate. As you have the opportunity to already experience the Shell culture, the collaborative ways of working, the high standards of HSSE (Health, Safety, Security and Environment) and many of the Shell systems; not to mention having a few friendly faces in the corridor on day one.

Describe what makes Shell’s Assessed Internship Program unique?

All of us were given specific and meaningful projects to complete, with formally assigned support systems in the form of supervisors, mentors and buddies.  

Why should today’s students apply for an assessed internship with Shell?

The opportunity to see up close how a company like Shell operates, to learn from some of the best people in the energy industry, and give yourself a huge advantage when it comes to obtaining a graduate role.

What can students expect in the various stages of the Assessed Internship Program?

Over the course of the internship, we undertook onboarding activities and got to know our teams and our projects. We then spent the majority of the time working towards meeting our project deliverables as well as taking part in other learning opportunities as they arose. Towards the end of the internship, we put together presentations on the work we had carried out to present to our fellow interns and leaders from across the business, as well as assessors.

In the assessed interview we had the opportunity to show how we had met the Shell CAR (Capacity, Achievements and Relationship) criteria through our actual experiences working on our projects.

What is some of your advice to students applying to internships, and how would you encourage them to put their best foot forward?

Treat your internship application like an application for a graduate position because that’s where it could take you!

Any final words of advice for students considering an internship?

Absolutely the best experience I had at university and it has shaped where the rest of my career will take me.

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