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Camilla - Summer Placement Profile

Book open Reading time: 4 mins

We hear from Camilla on her experiences with the summer placement at SSE.

My name is Camilla, and I am 22 years old from Sweden. I have conducted a 12-week summer placement as an Energy Contract Analyst in the contracts team of SSE’s Energy Portfolio Management business unit based in the Perth office.

What did you study at university and what university do you/did you attend/what year group?

I studied an English Law LLB degree at the University of Dundee between 2020 and 2023, graduating this past June.

Which sectors did you consider applying to for your graduate or placement role and what made you choose SSE and the area you are now working in?

I was initially planning to pursue a career in law, but I was also very interested in the energy sector, so I decided to apply for this summer placement to gain some insight into the industry. SSE’s rapid growth was very exciting to me, it seemed like a company with a lot of industry expertise and great ambitions for the future. SSE’s location in Perth, and the fact that the Perth office is the headquarters seemed like a great opportunity to gain this experience and exposure to the heart of the organisation. I was also attracted to SSE’s focus on sustainability and work with renewables towards net zero. This summer placement has reaffirmed my interest in the energy industry and inspired me to change my career ambitions to pursue a career with a focus on renewable power.

How did you find the recruitment process?  Do you have any advice for students considering applying for the SSE Graduate Programmes/Summer Placements?

I was excited to discover a summer placement with SSE that was commercially focused. The initial application was straight-forward, and I was invited to take an online test shortly after. The online test was a combination of situational judgement questions and problem-solving questions requiring a fair bit logical reasoning and a little bit of maths. I found this part quite challenging because maths is not my strong suit, but don’t let this put you off! The next stage was a set of pre-recorded questions about SSE and the energy industry, to which I recorded my answers.

The last stage was a Teams interview with two senior members of the Contracts team. Although I was quite nervous for this, they put me at ease and asked a range of mainly strength-based questions about my abilities and a couple of more technical questions about the industry. Make sure to have some examples prepared because you will likely be asked about a situation when you exhibited X attribute.

I think that a genuine interest in the energy industry goes a long way. It will ensure that you seem enthusiastic and have some background knowledge of the sector. It is important to do some research about SSE, including values, goals and a couple of case-studies, and more specific research about the business unit that you are applying to. It is good to have some knowledge of the energy industry, however you are not expected to be an expert. Instead, showing curiosity and a will to learn is more important.

Tell us a bit about your current role, what you’ve learnt and what you’ve enjoyed most.

In the short time that I have been with the Contracts team I have learned so much and felt so supported by everyone in the team. I have had the opportunity to work on many different types of contracts including NDAs, PPAs, and GTMAs. I also worked on a market intelligence research project, looking at a couple of European markets that SSE has ambitions to move into. This was a great opportunity to develop my research skills further and learn a lot about the structure of power markets in different countries. Behind the scenes, I was learning the meaning of countless acronyms, gaining a more in-depth understanding of power trading and the contract structures which support this. Beyond this knowledge of the sector, I have learned what it is like to work in a professional environment. It might sound silly, but even corporate email jargon can be confusing and hard to get right at first!

The contracts team wanted to make sure that I got as much out of the experience as possible and were excited to teach me their ways. I had the chance to talk to many people within the organisation about their roles to try to pinpoint what I want to do in the future. The great thing about this summer placement is that it is what you make of it. Being pro-active and taking initiative will allow you to maximise what you get out of the experience. My time at SSE has been invaluable and has shaped my ambitions for the future; I am looking forward to returning to the University of Dundee for a postgraduate degree in Sustainability and Renewables.

Like the sound of SSE's summer placement? Visit their profile to find out more!