Great demand for engineering interns
Members of the Danish business community came in large numbers to meet engineering students at Aarhus University.
130 companies and hundreds of senior executives, HR employees and engineers were literally queuing up to meet students from the Bachelor of Engineering programmes at Aarhus University at this autumn’s P-day at Katrinebjerg and MATCHDAY at Navitas.
The reason is that interns are in high demand in a labour market generally facing a shortage of engineers across all sectors, says Henrik Olsen, associate professor at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and in charge of the P-day event at Katrinebjerg:
"We’re seeing a huge interest from the business community in getting in touch with our students. They want to hire interns, and they want to establish relationships. It’s the same scenario every year. A few hours after we open for registrations, all the places are gone. This is the 13th time we’re hosting the P-day, and we do it so that companies can offer our students something that we can’t give them here at the university. This is what makes their education unique and gives them a head start on the labour market. It's fantastic to see so much interest from companies once again."
Mads Bech Olesen, associate professor at the Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering at Aarhus University, has the same message from matchday at Navitas:
"There’s strong competition for a spot at the matchday event, and we’re delighted to see the keen interest in our students from the business community. It’s a well-known fact in the construction industry that Bachelors of Engineering from Aarhus University have something special to offer. Companies come all the way from Zealand and Funen to be part of the event.”
“It's super cool that there's a need for us out there”
One of the Bachelor of Engineering students attending the P-day is Elisabeth Lennert, who is studying software technology. She is overwhelmed by the huge company turnout at the event.
"It's awesome that there’s so much interest in us. There’s an awful lot of companies here, and I'm just here to chat with some of them, and hear what they have to offer. I'm looking forward to the internship," she says.
Daniel Borch-Olesen, who is also studying electrical engineering agrees.
"There’s a lot of companies here, for sure. And it can actually make you feel a bit honoured when you’re only on your third semester. I’m particularly interested in companies that work with automation. And I’d also be interested if there’s a culture of creativity and entrepreneurial spirit. That’s important,” he says.
Companies going head-hunting
The 130 companies signed up for the events range from global tech giants to small startups. They are competing on equal terms for the students’ attention.
"P-day is an important event for companies, as they need to promote themselves in the fight to attract the engineers of the future. At the same time, it’s important for us that our students get a chance to meet their future employers. The internship semester is extremely instructive, and very often an internship leads to the first job. So it can actually form an entire career," says Henrik Olsen.
Develco is one of the companies hunting for talented interns at Aarhus University every semester.
“We focus on attracting talents to our departments, and we have positive experience with interns from Aarhus University. We offer them an exciting workplace with very interesting tasks, and we make sure that they become an integral and equal part of our teams. After the internship, there are good opportunities to get a permanent job with us. For example, we just hired three newly graduated electronics engineers," says Jacob Bjerre, CEO at Develco.
Danske Bank also attended the P-day, scouting for engineering talents for the financial sector.
"We’re really feeling the much-debated shortage of engineers in the low response rates when we advertise positions. There’s keen competition for bright minds, so it’s important for us to be here at the P-day to have a chance to talk to the students. In our experience, engineers from Aarhus University are top notch. The same goes for the interns. We feel that they’re motivated and take responsibility for learning new things, and that they’re able to take a critical approach to their tasks and how to deal with them. And this is exactly what we need," says Anders Meidahl, platform engineer at Danske Bank.