Life on a Bright Futures Committee - the journey from then 'til now...

Life on a Bright Futures Committee - the journey from then 'til now...

Wednesday, 13th of June

Are you considering becoming part of your Bright Futures Society’s committee for 2018/19? Are you wondering how far a position like this can assist you in your future successes? We recognise this is an important question to answer, and so we brought in the big guns. Well, in other words, we asked our fantastic former President of Glasgow Bright Futures to talk us through his journey from then to now – and we didn’t regret it. Kris answers our quick-fire questions around his experience within his committee (throwing it right back to 2013/14!), what his journey was since graduating, and how he thinks his involvement within the Bright Futures network has helped get him to where he is now – in a Lifing Capabilty Lead role at Rolls Royce. Not too shabby!

Let the inspiration begin…

Kris Thomson

Former President of Glasgow Bright Futures / Current Lifing Capability Lead at Rolls Royce

Kris, what has your journey from graduation consisted of so far?

While in my final year at University, I did a six month Engineering Internship at Rolls-Royce in Derby. As a result of this I was offered a place on their Engineering Graduate Scheme starting in September 2015. During the scheme I was fortunate to experience a wide breadth of areas of the business. This included time spent working in Manufacturing, supporting product verification for one of our new engine variants and also moving to work in sites across Derby, Bristol and Hucknall. In April last year I was offered a place on the Extended Development Leadership scheme, aimed at Graduates on a fast track career path to future leadership roles. I’m currently in the first role of the scheme, supporting development of our capability to predict component life in civil aerospace engines.

What has been a highlight for you, since graduating?

Being selected for the Extended Development Leadership scheme last year. It required a lot of hard work during the graduate scheme. Since then it has provided me with some fantastic opportunities including training alongside some of our airline customers and being able to support numerous STEM events across the UK alongside my day job.

You are a former President of our Glasgow Bright Futures Society, four years ago now! What was this experience like for you?

I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of my time as part of the Glasgow Bright Futures Society! It was challenging and helped me develop some key soft skills along the way. The highlight was definitely winning Event of the Year at the Annual Society Awards for our CV Workshop with GE Aviation, I was so proud of the team and what we had been able to achieve as a relatively new society. We had some challenges along the way but the perseverance paid off considerably. I was also fortunate to then become a National Ambassador for Bright Futures as well, sharing my experiences and knowledge with other new and upcoming societies.

What honest advice would you give to a current student wanting to join a Bright Futures committee?

There are a number of different people with different skill sets needed to make a great Bright Futures committee, so don’t assume there isn’t a role suitable for you. It is a fantastic experience and you will pick up so many skills along the way. You will also meet people from across the university faculties as there is a great social aspect to the society as well. If you still aren’t sure, then go along to the next Bright Futures event and have a chat with the committee, they will be able to give you even more of an insight. If there isn’t a society at your university then why not help set one up! That’s exactly what my friends and I did, and I’m so glad we did!

Do you think your involvement in the Bright Futures network has helped or contributed to your opportunities since leaving university?

The skills I developed from being involved in and then running the committee have definitely helped me to get where I am now. Being able to manage people, speak in front of large groups and seek out networking opportunities are just some of many I could mention. Contacts made with employers through the committee are also very useful, in fact one employer offered me a job on their Graduate scheme just based on their interaction with me as President. Don’t underestimate just how useful it could be to your future career, employers are looking for pro-active people who get involved with societies like Bright Futures.

As a graduate, what advice do you have for those who are still experiencing their university years and are worried about their path after graduating?

Don’t worry! Seriously though, you still have time to think about what your career path might be. Bright Futures Societies are a great place to have those conversations about what you may or may not want to do, so reach out and get involved with the society at your University today! Remember, the society is run by students for students so you can help yourself at the same time as others with the types of events and networking opportunities you influence the society to provide. The opportunities are endless!


Want to chat to our team about joining one of our committees? Drop our Societies Manager, Khadijah, an email here. Or, to find out more about being part of a Bright Futures committee, check out our blog post here with everything you’ll need to know.

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