Science meets the arts in an IKEEP work placement

Electrical and Electronic Engineering student Tirenioluwa Omigbodun recently took on the challenge of an IKEEP placement with independent arts venue The Bristol Improv Theatre (BIT).

She was part of a student team looking at external factors impacting the theatre so they can adapt and attract new audiences. 


Tirenioluwa Omigbodun posing for a selfie in front of the window overlooking Wills Memorial Building on a sunny day in Bristol.

Tirenioluwa, can you tell us about your team placement with Bristol Improv Theatre?

The placement with the Bristol Improv Theatre was on looking at their external environment. The theatre was preparing their 2023/25 business plan and needed a glimpse of the socio-economic environment. We researched their audience profiles, trends within the industry and how the BIT impacts its environment.  

We visited some events hosted by the theatre and had interactive sessions with the team. The project ended with a presentation to the team, discussing our findings and making suggestions. 

I was tasked with assessing their customer profiles and looking at industry trends. I looked at where to meet their customers, if they are still as active as they were before the pandemic, customer demographics, and their potential interests in the future. 

What was the advantage of choosing a project that is so different from your engineering studies? 

Exposure! My degree enables me to use critical thinking and be innovative and solutions driven. I was exposed to an industry that entertains and empowers customers. Here, not one solution fits all customers and human interest drives the company’s development. I was also challenged to research and provide solutions focused on an industry I am less familiar with. 


What skills were you able to bring to the project? 

The skills I contributed from my personal experience were my research skills. I looked into the demographics and behaviours BIT’s customers and analysed the competitor market. Having worked with the University during the summer on a research project, I was able to develop inferences that informed the BIT of their audience profiles.  

Skills from my course that contributed were my data analysis and report writing skills. Data analysis came up as there were several instances where graphs were used to analyse information. I evaluated these graphs to give estimations on their external environment.


What were some of the skills you learned?

IKEEP introduced me to the business world and removed the misconceptions and fears on it. I learned about business and fundraising strategies. I also learned market analysis skills, business plan modelling and customer profile analysis. These have enabled me to analyse companies and think about creating value within the company in the coming years. 


How has taking part in the IKEEP paid project influenced your career ambitions? 

It’s influenced my thoughts on whether or not to work in industry after university or to get a PhD. I am now more focused on building a career in the engineering industry. 

My intention is to build a sustainable career in the business world, ensuring that I act as an intrapreneur in the companies where I work in future years. I am confident and convinced that I will make a positive impact on any company I work for after university. The engineering industry now seems less scary and more easily understood.  


What would you say to students thinking of taking part in an IKEEP placement? 

Have a go! It will challenge your mindset and give you the skills needed in the workplace. You will learn more about business modelling, strategies and intrapreneurship within your industry, opening doors to opportunities. 

Sign up to the IKEEP entrepreneurial training now and apply for a paid June work placement. You’ll earn £500 and gain hands-on experience of strategic thinking, problem solving and project management. Complete the self-directed online learning, followed by a Live online training on Tuesday 16 May to be eligible.  

Taking part in an IKEEP project boosts your CV and helps you in your job search. IKEEP is part of the world-renowned business incubator SETsquared Partnership.