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Published: 08 August 2017

McLaren welcomes automotive engineering student for placement

Automotive engineering student Shaun Rance worked as a Vehicle Development Engineer at McLaren Automotive Ltd during his Professional Training placement year.

At the University of Surrey we’re proud of our track record for graduate employability. Our pioneering Professional Training placement programme provides our students with unique access to the working world as an integral part of their degree and we currently work with over 2,300 placement partners to offer our students a wide range of valuable experiences across numerous industries.

MEng Automotive Engineering student Shaun Rance completed his Professional Training placement year at McLaren Automotive Ltd. Shaun worked as a Vehicle Development Engineer within the Vehicle Development & Prototype Build team, putting the skills he had learnt from his degree into practice and experiencing a real working environment.

Shaun commented: "Doing my placement there has allowed me to push myself and grow in confidence and professionalism, while enhancing my engineering skills.

"On placement I’ve been responsible for a fleet of vehicles, performing an array of tests to progress towards the next vehicle release. I’ve defined the technical specifications of each of the vehicles on my programme, liaising with function groups to build a vehicle on budget, with sufficient product representation for phase one testing. My role has now developed to include managing some of the vehicle builds, which involves me working with a team of technicians and function groups and making engineering decisions to ensure a high specification build."

The opportunity to do a Professional Training placement was a crucial factor in my decision to come to Surrey because the industrial experience you gain is highly valued in the job market.

Reflecting on the benefits of a Professional Training placement, and what he had learnt during his time at McLaren, Shaun said: "What I’ve learnt is that industry isn’t as scary as students sometimes perceive it to be, and there are always opportunities to prove your personal attributes and technical abilities."

Shaun's experiences at McLaren helped him explore his career options and realise his ambitions. He commented: "The industrial experience you gain is highly valued in the job market, while also providing clarity of career path as you go into the final years of your course.

"My Professional Training placement has exposed me to a wide range of career options, and given me a particular interest in chassis systems. My ambition when I graduate from Surrey is currently to pursue a career in vehicle dynamics, focusing in vehicle controls."


Explore our programmes in Mechanical Engineering Sciences, including our MEng/BEng in Automotive Engineering.

Find out more about McLaren Automotive careers.