The hustle of finding industrial attachment and where to start.

The hustle of finding industrial attachment and where to start.

Engineering students go through “character development” once they are done with their third year in school and have to look for an external attachment. The university basically sends you out into the jungle to fend for yourself with no road map. I joke to myself that they do that to prepare students for what has to come once they finish their university studies. We all know the unemployment situation in the country.

I remember going to the Industrial Area for the first time after my third year of studies. That is where I decided to start my hunt. I learned that tarmacking is a literal word and not figurative. I knocked on any gate which had a name ending with the word “Limited” on it and inside had a building with a chimney.
After pitching to the guards at the gate who rarely let me into the facility, I left my “request for an attachment|” letters with them after they promised to pass them on to HR. To this day, I have never received a response from any place I left my letter at the gate. So, lesson one, do not leave your documents at the gate.

Fortunately, not everyone had the same experience. Some students managed to get really good places of attachment where they got to put their theoretical knowledge into practice. You do not want to know the alternative. I asked some of my lucky friends about where they went for attachment and activities they participated in. I hope the list will make it a bit easy for you once it’s your turn to venture into the jungle because you will know which corners have what types of trees and the fruits they offer.

Mechatronics Engineering

1. Rivatex East Africa LTD

This is an expanding company so you get a lot of hands-on working on different systems installations. Some common engineering work you will get involved in include:

  • CNC machining: Design of orthopedic clamps
  • Installation of a fabric folding machine
  • Welding and fabrication e.g., fabrication of hot flue fan ducts.

  • 2. Kenya Ports Authority

    While here, you get to engage in the following activities:

  • PLCs and Electrical systems like induction motors
  • Mechanical systems for example hydraulics, diesel engines, welding, lathe, milling

  • 3. GearBox

    While here, you get to engage in the following activities:

  • Embedded Systems
  • Human Centered Design
  • PCB Design & Fabrication

  • 4. Machining Numerical Complex

    In this organization, you get involved in doing:

  • CNC programming
  • Troubleshooting PLC
  • Engineering design
  • Casting, Galvanizing, and other foundry activities
  • Heat treatment of metals

  • 5. Nakuja Project

    Ooh, and you do not have to leave JKUAT to get external experience. This impressive external attachment was done at JKUAT IPiC. The students that participated did the following:

  • Designed and fabricated vertical solid rocket motor test stand and conducted 6 successful static fire tests.
  • Designed and simulated rocket propulsion system using MATLAB.
  • Developed model rocket launch sequence.
  • Conducted research on model rocket ignition systems, model rocket recovery systems, and model rocket propellants.
  • Launched model rocket to an apogee of 32m.
  • Submitted an abstract on the development of solid propellant motor for low altitude model rockets for the 2021 Sustainable Research and Innovation Conference.

  • I am a mechatronics student but good thing I have friends outside my course. My friends from other courses recommended the following areas:

    Telecommunication & Information Engineering

    1. ONFON MEDIA – In this company, you get to learn and work as a software developer and network administrator.
    2. Unitel Services LTD – Similarly, in this company, you do networking. On top of that, you do routing and switching.

    Electrical & Electronic Engineering and Electronic & Computer Engineering

    1. Mombasa Cement Athi River – Electrical engineering students can go to this company and get experience in winding motors, laying cables, light connections, and DB configuration.
    2. Gearbox – Similar to Mechatronics students, you work on IoT and embedded systems.
    3. Kenya Rural Roads Authority – Here, as an attach√©, you mostly troubleshoot hardware and software problems for the company’s and employees’ personal computers.
    4. KenGen – Power generation and electrical maintenance is the main activity for this company.

    Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

    1. Associated motors, KENHA, ILRI – Here you mainly get to service different automotive machines and also practice bookkeeping skills.

    In conlusion

    I should have indicated how my friends got into these companies. For some it was referrals and therefore it is important to network and SES is a good place to start. For others, they simply applied through company websites and were given the chance.
    Still, SES groups are perfect for getting this kind of information because links are constantly being shared. Yet for some, it was the old school way; sending CVs and request letters DIRECTLY to the company HR. Courier services or company employees are perfect for this.

    Solo

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