Please tell us about yourself
Former Automotive student Shilpa Joy worked diligently while studying with us but also found time to be involved in extra-curricular activities within the university. We spoke with Shilpa to discover how university helped her grow as an individual and realise her potential.
What course did you choose to study and why?
I studied Automotive Engineering, as there were so few girls on the course and I wanted to prove that girls have nothing to shy away from.
Why did you choose BCU?
BCU was the right distance from my home and offered the exact course I wanted to study. I loved the campus and Birmingham as a city.
When you started university, did you know what you wanted to do as a career?
I didn’t know exactly what career role I wanted, but I knew I wanted to do something with cars. I knew I needed to gain experience before I could pinpoint a specific area in the automotive industry to specialise in.
Was there a particular module that sparked an interest in a topic you’d never considered before?
Physics wasn’t my strength, but I loved my modules and my tutors we amazing.
Tell us about your career path
I graduated from university the following year and got my first job in a space of four months! It was difficult at times, especially when I had no offers from any of the companies I had applied to. However, if there was one thing I took away from the event was to keep trying, never give up and in the mean time to do anything to make you stand out as an engineer.
I got an offer from Westfield Sportscars (WSC) in the Dudley, West Midlands to work on their amazing driverless Pod project. I joined as a Project Engineer and was able to do much more than I had ever imagined to as a newly graduated engineer. I got to liaise with customers, pick up tools and built vehicles, do design work on CAD, etc. I will never forget the valuable experience and information I gained from attending TARGETjobs Future Females Engineers. I strongly believe that it has helped me a great deal to get to where I am today. I hope that one day I get to help more girls who are in the position that I was in back in 2015 and be one of those strong women they will remember.
You currently work at Jaguar Land Rover. What is the most challenging aspect of your current role?
Shilpa is a Prototype Build Engineer at Jaguar Land Rover. I am directly in charge of three build zones at the start of the assembly line. Any delay in my zones would impact the completions and delivery of that particular vehicle to the customer. I face a variety of challenges on a day to day basis and finding solutions to them aren’t always quick or easy.
What main skill from your university days have you taken with you through your life?
University taught me to always have a five year plan. I cannot tell you how important this turned out to be for me. My five year plan encourages and pushes me to the next step in my career and each time I look at it, it reminds me to stay on track and reassures me why I am doing what I am doing.