Mark Dungan, Automation Engineer, Codico Distributors
Job title Automation Engineer
Employer Codico Distributors
EducationWaterford Institute of Technology (WIT), Applied Electronics 2018
Tell us about your job offer and what it involves?
I work with Codico Distributors Ltd. Codico are based in Waterford and are the leading supplier of industrial coding and marking equipment in Ireland. I am primarily employed as an Automation Engineer working on projects in manufacturing facilities throughout Ireland.
Did you go out on Work Experience? With who and what were you doing ?
Yes, getting an industrial placement was an integral part of my course. The placement lasted 8 months and during this time I was employed by Codico Distributors Ltd in the service department. Over the course of the 8 months, I worked on a number of installations of coding and labelling equipment as well as working with Service Engineers in manufacturing facilities throughout Ireland. As my placement was with a relatively small company, I also got to experience other aspects of the company such as sales, marketing and logistics which I would not have had if I was placed with a larger company.
How did you get your job and how did your degree help?
I was offered the job towards the end of my work placement. I was told that, if I wanted to, I could return to work on Codico once I completed my studies. I was offered an Automation Engineer position with Codico before I completed my final semester which was very exciting and reassuring, as automation is an area I am highly interested in.
My degree was hugely important as it not only covered important areas of electronics such as analogue, digital and computer programming, it also covered a number of other areas relevant to automation such as PLC's, pneumatics and other control system theory.
I also got to work on a number of projects, most notably an autonomous car project which really helped with my understanding of electronics and automation. My final year project included the use of a vision system which is becoming more and more important in automation.
What skills are you focusing on improving and honing before you start your graduate job?
I am focusing on honing my programming skills and aiming to improve my understanding of PLC's and pneumatics.
What skills are in demand in your sector and how would you advise students to prepare?
Programming languages such as C, C++ and C# are always in demand and are being used more in Industrial applications. A knowledge and experience working with vision systems is also a great skill to have as it is becoming standard in many automation applications. I would advise any student, if they are interested in pursuing a career in automation, to try to incorporate some aspects of automation into their final year project such as vision systems, the use of sensors and a relevant programming language.