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May 09, 2011

Career begins here…

After a long process of job searches, applications, interviews and assessments - I finally have a job confirmed! From July 2011 I will be working as a graduate field service engineer with Siemens Wind Power. Very excited about this job and the huge variety of new experiences it will bring. Hopefully this is the first step towards becoming an industry expert in the wind energy industry!

May 03, 2011

Final exam preparation

Well, it's been a long haul for the past 4 years, but it's almost at an end. Just over 1 month until I take the last academic exam of my life (probably). And what about jobs? Well, I'm quite ready to get straight into one, but the options haven't quite been fully defined yet...

April 08, 2011

Short review of the best hotels to stay near the University of Warwick

Studying at the University of Warwick, which is one of the best UK's higher educational establishment with a recognised authority for excellent teaching and researches, gives the perfect opportunity to explore the neighbouring cities. Though the University bears the name of Warwick, in fact it is located just on the border between Warwickshire and the West Midlands. That's why it's a nice chance to visit both counties with their special and charming cities and towns, such as Warwick and Coventry, for instance.

Nowadays more than 80 thousands of tourists come to Warwick every year. They are especially impressed with Warwick Castle, which has almost a thousand-year history. Visitors are enraptured with the special atmosphere in the castle, as it has got all the proper attributes from Medieval Ages. These are true wax figures of knights, princesses, archers and other inhabitants of the castle. Besides, Warwick holds annual festivals, devoted to different events, music or literature, which are also of high demand among local dwellers as well as newcomers.

Those, who come here on vacations or business trip, will definitely need to stay in the city for several days to enjoy all the sights, offered by the city. Convenient accommodation is provided by Warwick hotels, specially designated for such purposes. Every guest will feel here right at home, because hotels are notable for their delightful atmosphere, neatness and typical British service. The most outstanding ones are:

Honiley Court Hotel and Conference Centre is a marvellous hotel originally built as a farm in the 16th century. Later the farm was rearranged into a pub called The Boot Inn, which is now incorporated into the hotel, conserving the original building but, adding a modern zest. The hotel offers all necessary amenities to guarantee calm and peaceful rest for its guests.

The Ardencote Manor Hotel, Country Club & Spa combines traditional elegance with the comforts and facilities of a modern, luxury hotel with the emphasis on relaxation. Set in landscaped grounds close to historic Warwick and Stafford-upon-Avon it offers tastefully appointed accommodation, fine cuisine and extensive leisure activities.

Lord Leycester Hotel knows that guests, who come to Warwick both for business and pleasure, appreciate high quality food, so the hotel's main aim is to provide visitors with it. All food is freshly prepared from local products, moreover the hotel caters for guests with any special dietary requirements.

The hotels value their good names, because reputation is very expensive in England. It is possible to say without exaggeration that all Warwick hotels offer cozy rooms, which are tastefully decorated and possess all the necessary amenities for the rest full of value. As you can see, the city successfully combines places of interests, picturesque landmarks and comfortable accommodation, thus attracting more and more visitors every year.

Coventry is exactly that city, which hosts the University of Warwick on its southern outskirts. But it's not only the university and high level of teaching the city can boast. It has also got plenty of sites of attraction for its visitors. Among them Coventry and St. Michael's Cathedral will be interesting for those, who are fond of architecture, the Herbert Art and Museum, Coventry Transport Museum for those, who like paintings and exhibitions, and many others to satisfy even the highest demands of fastidious connoisseurs of art and other gourmets.

As well as in other British cities, Coventry hotelsalso offer the high level of service and comfortable accommodation for guests, who come to see all the beauties of the city. Luxurious five-star hotels, prestigious and cozy four-star ones, reliable and quality budget hotels are at your total disposal. The helpful staff of Coventry hotels will do everything possible to make your stay pleasant and calm. All hotels provide the European level of service and can guarantee only warm emotions and memories after your visit to Coventry. Here are several hotels, which you can choose, when staying in Coventry:

Enjoy great service at the Holiday Inn Coventry-South hotel, settled in Coventry's leafy suburbs within walking distance to major Midlands motorways. You will be tuned in with high-speed Internet in your spacious and cozy guestroom and dine in the Brasserie Restaurant, offering only fresh and delicious food. Holiday Inn Coventry-South is well-located if you're visiting an exhibition or conference.

A privately owned Brooklands Grange Hotel with individual style and charm is conveniently located in the Heart of England. Originally a 16th century Jacobean farmhouse, Brooklands Grange has been recently restored and refurbished, to combine original character with modern innovations. The hotel will perfectly suit businessmen as well as leisure travellers.

The Royal Court is an 1894 manor house set in 11 acres of landscaped grounds. It was totally renovated in 1999, adding new bedrooms, large conference facilities and an extensive health club with an 18-metre indoor swimming pool on its premises. It is a real slice of paradise in the heart of England.

The numerous places of attraction and the wide range of UK hotels for every taste will make your stay in Warwick as well as Coventry, the cities with distinctive culture and traditional way of life, memorable and delightful, and you will certainly want to come here again.

March 06, 2011

Build my own wind turbine from scratch?

Writing about web page http://www.scoraigwind.com/axialplans/recipecontents.htm

In the early hours of Sunday morning while I was attempting to finish the Weibull curve fitting section of my assignment, I stumbled upon "The wind turbine recipe book". It immediately struck me as something I wanted to do - build my very own wind turbine. I'm hardly expecting the megawatts here but I think it will be a very useful exercise to carry out in the summer after graduation and before I fit into a job (most likely in September). Would I be able to build my own micro-generator and how much would it cost me (time and money) to do so? I want to find out, so this is on the agenda now!

Wind turbine recipe book 06-03-2011

It looks like it's been written by a guy who is a bit of an enthusiast. Whilst it might not be the most neat of websites or appearances, I'd stick with "never judge a book by it's cover". I think I can get a lot from this, and building a wind turbine will be a huge benefit to my knowledge for a future career.

What will I power with it though? That's the next question. I don't really see myself trying to get it on the Feed In Tariff. As this will be quite small scale (probably about 2kW...?) I might aim to charge a set of batteries or something. Then I could use that power as and when needed for any number of interesting purposes. The example that comes to mind is the pedal powered sound system at the University of Warwick's go green week. Anyway we'll see about that. By the time summer rolls round, if I have the time and resource to do this I might just dedicate a whole blog to it.

January 29, 2011

Right, time to take the job hunt to the next level

Writing about web page http://www.adamlord.webs.com

I'm determined not to be one of those graduates that ends up at a loose end when June rolls around. So this is my masterplan for planning a career. I've basically dedicated a wall of my room to it, which will get progressively filled up.

Careers wall

I've already been in to speak with a few staff at Eneco who have offered their words of wisdom. But ultimately it's up to me to find myself a decent (and I don't mean well paid) job. I'm after a position in probably a large company, and probably not a generic graduate scheme. I just want to get my hands dirty and work on real wind projects (most likely offshore). Well, it's not going to be straightforward to get into that. Since my last blog post I think I've just been getting stuck in the "HR loop" - where none of my potential bosses are actually glancing at my cover letter or CV. So the next step is to make my CV bolder, cover letter more tailored to each company and get the message out to people that will actually be interested in what I will do for them.

January 17, 2011

Job Applications

Writing about web page http://uk.linkedin.com/in/adamlord89

This weekend I have begun making serious moves towards the start of my career. Following my internship at Eneco it is now very clear that I want to work in the wind energy industry. Ideally, this will be an engineering role leading to a project management position. My goal is to make a positive impact on the industry and accelerate the pace at which renewable capacity is installed, in the UK and worldwide. I don't really have anything tying me down where I am at the moment, so what's stopping me getting out there for some diverse project experience?

October 17, 2010

Back at University – 4th Year

Writing about web page http://adamlord.webs.com

I have recently started back at Warwick for my 4th and final year. I am focussing on Sustainability this year - and hence my final degree title will be "Mechanical Engineering with Sustainability". I am also studying Chinese as an overload, as this is bound to be a useful skill, at least on a basic level, for the future.

Today I created an online CV, which may be useful for future careers and networking - http://adamlord.webs.com

I am also continuing my role as careers representative for the Engineering department, filtering through the large amount of recruitment information for graduates and just supplying the relevant stuff.

Warwick Jailbreak is the large charity hitch hike event that I lead, and will be happening in a few weeks time (36 hours from 6th-7th November). This year we are hoping to raise in excess of £20,000 for UNICEF and get around 300 participants involved. Successful teams in previous years have got as far as Tenerife, Cyprus, Morocco and all across Europe! See www.warwickjailbreak.com


September 09, 2010

Step Presentation and Awards 2010 – Eneco Wind UK

I am now nearing the end of my summer placement with Eneco Wind UK Ltd, where I have been looking specifically at novel access system designs for offshore wind farms.

Today I gave a short presentation of my work, and it was good enough to be awarded the best STEP project of 2010! The official award title is "Most Enterprising Student of the West Midlands 2010". I am very proud of this achievement and hope to build on it to further my career in the industry.

The summary of this report is given below. Please note that this is a report done for a University project and does not necessarily reflect the views of Eneco Wind UK.

Zone 7 is a large offshore wind farm project off the West coast of the Isle of Wight, which is currently in the planning stage. According to the plan, it should reach financial close in 2014 and be fully operational by 2018. An important part of operating such an offshore wind farm is securing a method of accessing the wind turbines. This report focuses on analysis of various methods available as well as new approaches, with a view to suggesting a valid solution. The winning solution will be a trade off between economics, technical innovation and health and safety. Many different solutions are assessed in detail according to these merits. No firm conclusion can be drawn at this stage, but provisional suggestions are made. The final proposed solution will be given at the end of the STEP placement on 1st October 2010, in a report for Eneco, which will contain a more detailed and thorough analysis of all technologies to justify the conclusion.

Until next time,


May 03, 2010

Presenting my maglev to the IET

Writing about web page http://www.theiet.org/local/uk/westmids/birmingham/u-c.cfm

On the 28th April (the day after our project deadline) I went to Birmingham to an IET event to give an oral presentation of my project to a panel of industry judges. this was an interesting event as I really got an insight into what other young Engineers were doing from different universities. Matthew Broxham came with me as he worked on the electrical part of the maglev, and we presented it together. The audience seemed to enjoy it and were impressed, however in many ways we were bringing a knife to a gunfight, because the competition was fierce and at an industry level. The winners were two guys who had saved corus £0.5million with steel cobbling.

Even so, the judges had a lot of positive things to say about our presentation:

Adam Lord and Matthew Broxham - Maglev
Adam and Matthew started well with a good video as a scene setter and showed very good technical knowledge throughout the presentation, particularly when answering questions. It would have been beneficial to see some thoughts on industrial applications and improvements that could have been made. A two-man presentation is often difficult and the hand-overs would have benefitted from more practice; both presenters did well, however it would have helped to have the quieter Matthew by the microphones.
Audience interest was well maintained throughout and there was some good use of humour (although occasionally at the expense of speaking over each other). A stronger conclusion would perhaps have finished the presentation off better than sliding into the question session.
Adam and Matthew scored solidly in most areas, but failed to gain key marks in the relevance to industry (although they may not have been told that this was one of the judge's criterion, consideration of the audience should have made this clear).


If you want to see the video that we played to them at the start, go here: www.tiny.cc/maglev3

And more videos are here: www.tiny.cc/maglev1 www.tiny.cc/maglev2

April 08, 2010

Third year so far…

Writing about web page http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GjTLvEWxiyU

This has been an interesting year so far where the pace of life inside and outside of study has really picked up. Almost every week so far we've been pushed with deadlines for assignments that I would have hardly understood at the start of the year! But I'm glad to have my abilities stretched. This is particularly true for my third year project, which is now nearing completion. Matthew Broxham and I have taken on the challenge of designing and manufacturing a maglev system entirely from scratch. See the youtube link (related web page) for the finished result! On top of that, I've been taking extra-curricular activities a lot more seriously. I've become president of Jailbreak society and have started taking my sports a lot more seriously (dodgeball and lacrosse).

Now the pressures are coming at me from two separate angles. Firstly, and most importantly, exams are coming up in about 6.5 weeks. As soon as I finish this project report and 2 remaining assignments it's straight onto the revision and non-stop until 2nd June! Secondly, there's the challenge of getting myself some Engineering based work experience this summer. I have applied, literally, to every vacancy that I have been interested or even vaguely interested in for a summer placement. And I've been putting passion and time into each application. I'm not sure whether other people are in the same situation as me, but it seems almost impossible to successfully get an internship unless you have some sort of family/friend contact within an organisation. I have yet to receive a job offer, but I have had 2 telephone interviews (Exxonmobil, npower), one face-to-face technical interview (BP), one assessment centre (National Grid) and about 30 rejections at earlier stages in the recruitment process. The field I am REALLY interested in is the future development of energy, to make it sustainable, and its applications. So far at university I have found plenty of opportunities to learn about this through my course, (which I have taken and will continue to take!) but beyond university there seem to be far fewer opportunities. I know there are many jobs out there, and that it is an expanding job market... but for people like me who are keen to get stuck in and work all summer to get some hands on experience... I can't seem to find a way in! Anyway, that's what is frustrating me at the moment. I've been trying for that over the past two terms and now it's time to focus on the first pressure, and ignore the second. There are always other things to do over summer and / or other ways to make money! My backup plan is to go and play classical guitar in classy restaurants... if I do that enough I'm bound to eventually climb out of my student overdraft, which is approaching -£2500!

June 28, 2008

First Year results

Got a 2:1 out of my first year! Not bad... I think I averaged around 65%. Although first year doesn't actually count for anything towards the degree it still helps to move onto bigger and better things!

November 29, 2007

Vectors and Matricies

For some reason vectors and matricies are very hard to get my head around....

Vectors - probably because they make no sense when you draw a 2D representation of a 3D plane or collection of planes or whatever. Especially because I can't draw.

Matricies - It's easy to learn methods to work out determinants and all the rest of it, but how are you supposed to fully understand them when they're just a collection of numbers without any application or use currently known to us?!?!?!?!?! I know they are used for things, but without knowing what, I know that I just won't remember all the formulae and techniques for manipulating them. Because my brain doesn't work on memorising equations then mindlessly putting in values..... anyway we'll see.....

October 04, 2007

The eight aims of university

Since I'm not really too sure about what to write for my first blog, I'll note down the 8 aims for my time at university that we were asked to write about in the first lecture....

1) Gain plenty of knowledge about all types of Engineering before deciding what I want to specialise in.

2) Achieve well throughout the course - or at least achieve the best I am capable of!

3) Get friends for life.

4) Get involved with plenty of social circles.

5) Learn from others and listen to their different perspectives on situations.

6) Become known and respected.

7) Learn how to be creative and use my knowledge to innovate

8) Take the first steps towards my ultimate goal: To solve the energy crisis