Meet James, an Intern with Northrop Grumman in the UK

I was on Northrop Grumman’s Internship Scheme from 2020 to 2021, as part of my studies in Computer and Cyber Security at the University of Gloucestershire. On the scheme, I was involved in developing a multitude of research questions and proof-of-concept deliverables, ranging from front end development to machine learning models. Being part of a Northrop Grumman internal research and development (IRAD) team allowed me to progress into other projects, bringing forth technical knowledge and experience gained from developing my research ideas. 

Working from home during Covid lockdowns did mean that I could have missed out on the interpersonal aspect of a professional environment, but on the scheme I still gained a huge amount of confidence working in teams; articulating ideas clearly, developing solutions effectively and addressing concerns promptly. This type experience can be difficult to develop in an academic environment as teams there may not always have the background in Agile Methodologies (which is primarily used at Northrop Grumman). From a technical standpoint, I have been able to demonstrate effective use of collaborative tools such as Jira, BitBucket and Confluence to help develop and document code, with expert guidance for my Data Science projects. One of the main benefits of working for Northrop Grumman is the number of opportunities that they have to offer and the resources that they are willing to invest in your career journey.

Prior to my internship I had little to no experience working with Machine Learning / Data Science; but over the course of the year I was able to code my own generative networks, optimise models and create solutions to novel problems.

One of my main hobbies outside of work is weightlifting; this has been especially important over the last year as it has helped me to keep active and strong whilst working remotely 40hrs a week. As part of the Social Committee at Northrop Grumman, I was also able to join a virtual weightlifting society. Although we weren’t able to train together in person, due to covid restrictions at the time, it was great to know that there were other people with similar interests in the company that I could connect with.

If you’re not sure about the specific direction you’d like your career to take then Northrop Grumman’s research internship is a great choice, as they will provide opportunities for you to gain experience in different disciplines. On the other hand, if you know what you want to do, Northrop Grumman will invest in providing you with projects that align with your goals and support you along the way.

In September 2021 I returned to university for my final year of my degree, aiming to continue my research in machine learning and data science for my dissertation. On graduating I will return to Northrop Grumman to complete a 2 year Graduate Position focusing on data science technologies within IRADs.