Students’ fast-track to work

Engineering students who get work placement at a Cambridge company are pretty much assured of something else – a job.

University of Waikato student Mead Blackmore (left), pictured at Rocketspark with Richard King.

At the award-winning website builder Rocketspark’s office in Alpha Street, Cambridge, the staff all have one thing in common. They are all University of Waikato graduates.

And the trend will continue, because the innovative company formed by graduates Richard King, Lee Reichardt, Jeremy Johnson and Grant Johnson has a policy of tapping into talent through the work placement programme offered at the University of Waikato.

Rocketspark have traditionally taken a student from the programme for a work placement, then retained them by offering them continued employment after they complete their placement.

Rocketspark is a platform that customers can use to design their own website or ecommerce store on. It also works with an army of graphic designers nationally and internationally who work with customers.

Mead Blackmore is the latest student from Waikato to benefit from work experience at Rocketspark.

The undergraduate, who is studying a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) majoring in software, has been with the company since last August.

“He came onboard to do his summer work placement which has lead on to continued casual employment with Rocketspark while he continues his studies,” Richard King explained.

His current tasks include providing customer support and coding up website designs for customers who purchase extra design packages.

Mead, who grew up in Cambridge and has been a volunteer in the region’s Search and Rescue organisation, relishes the opportunity to work and study at the same time.

“Here I am dealing with customers and work in a team – it’s a bit different from the study exercises where I am looking at one-time algorithms.”

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