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Interning at Aquila

With a recent rebrand, launch of a new website and the introduction of a fresh marketing strategy, the start of 2018 has been very exciting for Aquila’s Marketing and Business Development. As innovation and development are at the core of Aquila’s values, we are proud to offer experience and skill development to those starting out in their career and to be part of Edinburgh Napier University’s Get Inside Work Shadow Programme. In May, an undergraduate from the School of Applied Sciences at Edinburgh Napier will spend a week with Aquila. Additionally, this year a fantastic opportunity presented itself for Aquila to share their marketing journey with a likeminded individual with fresh ideas looking to start their career. Aquila was delighted to offer Abbey Mackie a three-month Marketing Internship role.

Abbey, who recently graduated from Edinburgh Napier University with a degree in Business and Entrepreneurship, joined us for a three-month internship in February. As part of internship awareness month, we asked Abbey to reflect on her experience of working with us.

Why Aquila?

The first thing that attracted me to Aquila was its innovation and dynamic nature. The research Aquila does is incredible and it is enabled by an open and collaborative working environment. Being fresh out of university, I wanted a challenge. Since Aquila operate in a very specialised scientific field, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to experience how a young and innovative company market themselves, and hopefully I could bring a few ideas to the table in the process. As brand management is an interest of mine, experiencing Aquila’s roll out of their rebrand was exciting and a fantastic addition to my internship.

What did you do?

Aquila’s internship matched the stereotypical definition in title only! From day one, I was performing hands-on tasks, nothing that resembled getting coffee in the slightest, which was great. I was given the opportunity to take ownership of the social media channels as well as managing the rebrand internally, while providing support to other business areas such as procurement and administration. This has been an amazing opportunity. It is very rare to be given this degree of control and creative flexibility, while also receiving the support to excel, in an entry level role. I found the experience truly invaluable and I am thoroughly enjoying being part of the Aquila team.

How did your expectations compare to reality?

In honesty, I was not sure what to expect when I started. Coming from a business background, day one was the first time I saw a real research laboratory, which was an eye opener but an exciting one! The Aquila team are truly experts in their fields and have inspired me to become one in mine.

What were the main challenges?

The biggest challenge was understanding the science and the terminology as I came from a business background; it was like learning a completely new language. However, luckily, I am a quick learner with an interest in what Aquila do so with help from the scientific team, I’m proud to say I’m catching on fast.

The whole experience

Overall, the experience at Aquila has been invaluable. Although they are a Life Sciences company, they have given me a strong practical foundation in marketing. The support provided by the team has given me the confidence to excel by jumping in at the deep end, learn on my feet, and put forward my ideas. I have gained a great deal out of this internship and I am delighted to have had this amazing opportunity.