Delivering on next generation skills for offshore wind: internships at Quaybridge during lock-down
Living up to our principles in challenging circumstances can be tough. The Quaybridge team had to think long and hard about the practicality of proceeding with our summer internship programme as the Covid-19 pandemic took hold earlier this year. How could we effectively engage with, mentor and inspire young engineers in lock-down? How could we get them to do useful and interesting work?
At Quaybridge, we aspire to deliver “Next Generation Offshore Wind” which includes a commitment to help deliver the skills needed for the Scottish industry in the long-term. Investment in educational programmes for school age children as well as providing internships for undergraduates is part of our effort to walk-the-talk on skills. Getting youngsters fully engaged in our projects is important to us. Last year we brought a previous intern along with us to a private Ministerial-level meeting to take notes and to experience the political aspects of the renewables business. We also chose to support Winds of Change, a student-led project at Edinburgh University designed to enable student learning on low-carbon energy generation as well as supporting Edinburgh-based community charities.
We met David Thomason in his role as project manager of the Winds of Change project and in March, we decided to follow through with our plan to offer David a paid summer internship with Quaybridge – adapting our programme to rise to the practical challenges imposed by lock-down. We’re proud to have been able to keep our commitment in such challenging circumstances by being flexible and finding workable solutions.
David is well over a month into his internship, so does he think it has worked?
“As the pandemic hit, many of my classmates had their internships cancelled and job offers rescinded. I really appreciate that Quaybridge adapted to the circumstances and maintained their offer. This makes me feel valued by the company and shows their commitment and integrity. Despite the strange experience of starting a new job from home, my colleagues at Quaybridge have all made an effort to meet me over videocall. It has worked surprisingly well, and I already feel well integrated in the company.”
David will shortly graduate from Edinburgh University with First Class Honours in Chemical Engineering and hopes to go on to study sustainable energy systems or renewable energy at Masters level later in the year.
Strategy Manager for Quaybridge, Zoe Barnes commented “It’s been fantastic having David with us during these unusual and challenging times. He’s added real value to Quaybridge and has learnt a great deal about the offshore wind sector in the process. As a result of this successful and rewarding experience, we are planning to take on a second intern into our development team this summer, so if you are interested, please do get in touch.”