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Solving problems at the cutting-edge of science

1. What is your background and how did you get into software engineering?

Software engineering has been a passion of mine since I was young. My schoolteachers encouraged me to take my interest beyond education, and I wanted to use software engineering as a means of adding value to the world. Now I feel privileged to be solving problems whilst being at the cutting-edge of science within a world-renowned organisation.

2. Why did you want to do an industrial placement with us?

Prior to my placement, I had no experience of being a Scientific Software Engineer in a working environment. With the Met Office, I can utilise my skillset to develop features that can be introduced into the workflow and continuously evolve the quality of our weather forecasts. 

3. What new skills have you developed, and how have you developed existing ones?

The Met Office constantly promotes the idea of ‘experts by nature.’  By being nurtured in an environment like this, I’ve found learning and developing becomes infectious. I’ve felt like an asset within my team, because of the encouragement to specialise in a different area from others. This has involved developing a weather observation quality control system, which will provide us with the most accurate observation data to use in every forecast.

4. What have been the challenges and what have you enjoyed so far?

Sometimes I’ve felt like I’ve been thrown in at the deep end, and I’ve struggled to comprehend everything.  But it’s rewarding to know I am learning more and able to demonstrate how I make a difference each day. My highlight so far has been our recent away day to Exmouth involving all the Satellite and Surface Assimilation teams from across the UK. It was great for everyone to come together and discuss how we want to evolve our next generation forecasting to keep people safe from weather hazards and allow more effective planning.

5. What do you like about working with the Met Office, and why would you recommend industrial placements to others?

My colleagues really do reflect the Met Offices values. There are so many talented people who have been willing to share their knowledge to help me develop professionally and personally. I’ve had a breadth of opportunities and experiences, which has shown me this really is a great place to work.

This article was published in January 2024.

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