Powering the Future at Wood

Zamzam Jeylani

MEng Chemical Engineering, University of Strathclyde

Renewable Energy & Power Intern, Wood, Atlanta, Georgia, USA

In the summer of 2022, I had the privilege of travelling to Atlanta, Georgia, to embark on an internship with Wood Group, a leading FTSE 250 Company.

As a Renewable Energy & Power Intern, I had the incredible opportunity to apply the knowledge and skills I have gained through my chemical engineering degree. This experience not only enriched my academic background but also provided me with valuable insights and real-world experience in the renewable energy sector.

Throughout my internship, I worked on several engaging projects that gave me invaluable engineering experience. One of the highlights was serving as the scribe for a multi-disciplinary design review of a large-scale EPC air pollution project, which afforded me an in-depth understanding of the intricate processes involved in such undertakings. Additionally, I developed my people management skills by interacting with the team at an operational P&G paper plant site as part of an O&M service contract.

The primary project of my internship focussed on the end-to-end creation and implementation of PRO Risk, an innovative cloud-based app for risk management. I had the opportunity to partner with a Risk Manager, and we worked on the project together to develop and deploy the app, which required me to draw upon various technical and creative skills. As part of the development of PRO Risk, I completed beta testing and aided continuous improvement by integrating user feedback and working with developers. As a result of our efforts, we increased business efficiency by 15% by executing several projects on the app. This experience was instrumental in helping me learn about business efficiency improvements and effective risk management in an engineering context.

After successfully collaborating to develop PRO Risk, I created user manuals and established and delivered PRO Risk system training to ten project managers across Wood Group’s diverse portfolio of projects. This experience strengthened my communication skills and boosted my confidence in training others. In addition, leading the development, testing, deployment, and training of a solution from start to finish alongside other Wood Group team members was an incredibly insightful experience that sharpened my leadership skills. This comprehensive approach allowed me to gain a thorough understanding of the solution, and through the process, I gained more experience in managing and leading projects. The experience was truly invaluable, and I am confident that the leadership skills I gained will benefit me in all my future endeavours.

Another insightful experience during my internship was taking a week-long visit to a 120MW EPC solar project site, where I assisted with site progress report updates. Not only did this help me enhance my presentation and reporting skills, but it also built my confidence in communicating with senior leaders within Wood Group. Furthermore, the site visit enhanced my real-time troubleshooting skills, where I could engage in discussions when something went wrong, such as when a solar panel pile support was not mounted correctly.

Outside work, I was lucky to experience an unforgettable culture in Atlanta, Georgia, with its distinctive blend of history, art, music, and cuisine. This was my first experience travelling to the United States and my first experience travelling abroad solo. Although initially nervous, I found myself quickly becoming more confident and self-empowered in my day-to-day life as I navigated new circumstances, interacted with a diverse range of people from different cultural backgrounds and ate my way through diverse, authentic, and incredible foods. From this experience, I have learnt to enthusiastically welcome new experiences and perspectives and push myself outside of my comfort zone, which has opened the door to working or living abroad in the future.

Overall, my internship with Wood Group was an incredibly enriching experience. Through working on various projects, I developed my technical skills, leadership abilities, and people management capabilities, all while gaining invaluable insights into the renewable energy industry. I would recommend future Saltire Scholars to work with Wood Group because it was a truly transformative experience that has increased not only my confidence and technical skills but excitement about the world around me and the endless possibilities the future can hold.

Written by: Zamzam Jeylani
Zanam and Kyle Wood Group with Matt Clark Assistant Project ManagerKyle Anderson Wood Group