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SA Premier’s Scholarship Recipient Reflects on Internship Experience

Brandon Sears was one of the first recipients of the Premier’s Defence Industry Scholarship program. He joined APC Technology as an intern four months ago with the aim of developing on the job knowledge and experience. Brandon’s internship is coming to a close so we wanted to find out about his experience.

What areas/experiences were you hoping to develop by coming to APC.

When I started my internship with APC Technology I really wanted the chance to apply what I had learnt over the last four years and use it in a real world situation. Putting it simply, I wanted to learn what being a real mechanical engineer is and how to work like one.

What project did you predominantly work on whilst at APC.

The project given to me at APC was the design and development of an adjustable, un-welded 19” rack. This included project management & initialisation, materials and rack research, design conceptualisation and model analysis.

What experience from your university degree did you put into practical use whilst at APC.

I implemented appropriate project management techniques to make sure that the rack project was correctly defined. This ensured that I had a clear plan of attack when undertaking my placement project. I also used thermodynamic and fluid mechanic techniques to solve issues that arose while working on the generator project for Daronmont Technologies.

Check out the generator video to see more on the Daronmont project.

What was your best experience.

Singling out my best experience is hard because of the variety of opportunities I was given. I really enjoyed working in the environmental testing hub. I was allowed to undertake a full shock & vibration project for the a 19” rack mounted communications sub-system system which APC is currently building for a defence customer. This was a fantastic experience and gave me a lot of experience & exposure to both standards and environmental testing. The experience was totally hands on and probably the most beneficial part of my placement with reference to exposing me to a different direction for my future career.

I also really enjoyed working with Matthew (a mechanical engineer at APC) on the generator project. The opportunity to work closely with another engineer, bouncing ideas and concepts off of one another to solve a complex problem was extremely enjoyable. The field work also  enabled me to interact with suppliers and customers which was a completely new dynamic to be a part of and observe.

What did you do, that you didn’t expect to do.

I never expected to get the chance to run environmental testing independently but it demonstrates the exceptional level of training I received at the beginning of my internship and the progress I made during my time at APC. I also never expected to take such a proactive role on the generator project.

After the experience is there an area you want to specialise in.

After my experience at APC I am interested in pursuing career opportunities in two key areas. Firstly I would like to specialise in environmental testing; managing the certification process of multiple projects. But I would also like to work as a design engineer and see projects through from start to finish. Both options appeal to me, but the experience has crystalised the fact that I really want to work in defence. Whether I am testing military equipment or designing the next piece of military war-gear, defence has been the motivating factor for the last 2 years of my engineering degree and I would love to be a part of its engineering sector as I move forward in my career.

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APC Technology is delighted to announce that  Brandon has accepted a full time graduate engineering role at APC Technology. 

Find out more about the Premier’s Scholarship program.

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