Rob Heymer

MEng Nuclear Engineering, 2020
Graduate Energy Engineer, WMG

I'm on the WMG (Warwick Manufacturing Group) Engineering Graduate Scheme for Energy Innovation. I've had the opportunity to work on a range of projects related to sustainability, to get involved with the research at WMG and develop my engineering skills.

I've assessed the carbon emissions for the University of Warwick, looked at the environmental impacts of plastic recycling, and used machine learning to improve the battery manufacturing process. I also assist with WMG's outreach programme, designing STEM projects for children to get them involved in engineering.

What’s the best thing about what you’re doing now?

I love that every project I work on at WMG is related to sustainability. Knowing that whatever I'm doing is helping to make a greener future a reality is really important to me, and a big reason why I enjoy working here.

rob heymer

How has your career developed since graduating?

After graduating, I worked as a Research Assistant within my final year project team at the University of Birmingham for a few months whilst tutoring part-time during the COVID-19 pandemic. I then worked in the Civil Service as a Technical Secretary for the Committee of Radioactive Waste Management. This was a great opportunity to be on the front lines of nuclear energy policy development, and I enjoyed working closely with experts in nuclear waste management on the committee. I then began the WMG Graduate Scheme for Energy Innovation, working on a range of projects related to innovation in the energy industry, where I'm still working now.

Why did you originally apply to Birmingham?

I was looking at studying physics initially, but the Nuclear Engineering course offered at Birmingham grabbed my attention. I also loved the atmosphere on campus and the wide range of student societies.

What are your fondest memories of the University?

I have a lot of memories of labs – both stressful and fun! I also have great memories of society events and making great friends!

Did you get involved in any extracurricular activities?

I was a member of the Ninjutsu martial arts society for most of my time at university. Doing martial arts was great, as it helped to build my self-confidence and fitness, and I made great friends as well. I also helped out on the committee, as the Vice President and President in my last two years. Leading the society was a great experience, and I think played a big part in getting the jobs I have - it's a great source of answers for interview questions.

What advice would you give to current students?

To all the Nuclear Engineers out there: it's a competitive job market, but don't give up! Any opportunities for presentation or leadership are great to set yourself apart when job-hunting after you graduate.

We Are (Third Width)

Two things Rob wishes he knew before starting university

“Two main things really: firstly, learning to cook during first year was really valuable! It helped to save me time, money and eat healthily throughout my time at university and since then, and I really enjoy it now. Secondly, looking after your mental health is the most important thing at university – not your marks, your friends, just YOU. University is a challenging time, and struggling with mental health isn't uncommon, and it's important to get help if you need it.”