Bhavin Radia has worked at Rolls Royce for the last eleven years, and is currently resource manager for twelve engineers.

 What did you learn at Imperial, in class and out?

 “The course prepared me for the way of thinking an engineer should have – I know that without the four years at Imperial doing those courses I wouldn’t have been ready for the jobs I’m doing now.

Can you tell me about your studies at Imperial?

“I actually deferred entry for a year by doing a year in industry first; that was working for a brewery company. This gave me an insight into the world of work, which helped me later on when applying for jobs as well as being a great experience in itself. Through the four years of the Mechanical Engineering course I quite like the mathematical side. Also I had studied Chemistry before, so a lot of the things within the course, for example, materials and thermodynamics, I could relate to.  The areas where I struggled were the design and the creative elements, they weren’t my strengths, and also manufacturing. I did ok in those, but I preferred the more technical, academic aspects.”

What is your fondest memory of your time at Imperial?

“It is difficult to think of just one, but I think one of the main positives that came out of it was the fact that I made so many friends – we were lots of like-minded people all in the same boat, if you like. It’s the start of those friendships that stands out.”

What jobs have you done since graduation?

“Since graduation, I’ve just worked for one company, I’ve worked for Rolls Royce within the aerospace sector working on military gas turbine engines  I joined Rolls Royce on the graduate training scheme then worked for the Safety and Reliability department for four and a half years. While I was there I did a lot of different types of work - risk assessments, statistics, capability development - helping me to build a strong technical basis in one topic area. Over the last five years, I have worked within the systems design integration function, working on a wide variety of engine  projects. This involves overseeing, planning and managing and integrating a variety of specialist areas to arrive at a system level technical solution Currently I’m a Resource Manager for twelve engineers in the system design and integration function.”

What are your plans for the future?

“I’m building up a good basis of knowledge now, with the intention of moving upwards within the Rolls Royce organization hopefully within the next two or three years. My plans are to go for more senior leadership positions and in particular more customer-facing roles. Although I’ve done customer-facing activities I think to have real responsibility for communicating with customers really interests me, whilst also maintaining a strong technical element in the role.”

What would be your advice for current students?

“The thing that always helped me was the work experience that I did in advance of university because it helped me to relate what I was learning to what actually goes on in a work place. It also it gave me a lot of good experiences to call on when applying for other jobs at the end of my course. So I guess my advice is to try and gain as much varied work experience as possible because I think even if a particular placement doesn’t go well, you can still learn a lot from doing it.”

What are you most proud of in your life?

 “Things have turned out pretty well career wise, I’m quite settled in my company and I have a good reputation for the work that I do.”

Do you have a favourite quote or saying?

 “When one of my early managers reviewed one of my reports, it had too much flowery language in it and so he wrote “make the report as dry as possible, try to stick to technical facts and evidence and don’t give opinion without justification.” I’ve tried to follow that advice, and it’s a quote I’ve remembered more than any other.”