Ben Pritchard, BEng, MEng Mechanical Engineering alumni

Ben Pritchard

What have you been doing since finishing your studies?

Having completed an industrial year at Williams during my academic studies, I went back in a graduate capacity, eventually becoming the lead processor. My roles included developing and maintaining the virtual vehicle model we used to generate data that was not possible to be measured physically, and to operate and develop the processing system during race weekends.

I have recently been accepted onto the Fusion Energy and Plasma Physics CDT at York Uni. I am using this as an opportunity to learn more about a field I am passionate about and to broaden my career opportunities beyond engineering-based roles. 

What experiences at Leeds do you think have particularly helped with your career?

The Employability Team really helped me present myself in the best way, allowing me to get my foot in the door for my graduate role. The personal relationships formed with my lecturers also helped improve my confidence and inspire me to aim high for my career.

Why did you choose to study your particular course and why did you choose the University of Leeds?

I chose engineering over physics due to job prospects at the end of the course, and Leeds was one of the top 5 universities in the UK for engineering during my application. I love the city and the vibe, so it was the perfect place to study!

What was the best aspect of your course?

The level of teaching and the personal relationships formed with the lecturers.

Do you have any advice for students considering taking a year in industry?

My year in industry with Williams F1 was a great opportunity to get my foot in the door and to helped give me a jumpstart for my career! 100% do it. It will provide dividends for your future career and it’ll prepare you for your final years with a much better work ethic, allowing you to ace your studies. The extra money from working is nice too!

What activities outside of your studies were you involved in?

I was involved in a lot of sports teams at the University, and being at uni is a great place to be able to try sports you may never have played before. I would also recommend getting involved with societies to expand your social network! Sometimes that social science student can help you see things in a new light that your mathematical brain may not have thought of.

What would you say to students thinking about studying your course?

If you enjoy learning physics and maths and want to apply the concepts to real world problems then engineering is for you. It’ll provide you with the mental tools to logically solve any problem and you’ll have a blast doing it. The range of engineering is so wide now and it is a gateway into so many STEM avenues from finance through to nuclear fusion!