Andrea Rocchi has gone from being a young graduate student to human capital. He came to Gilardoni to write his Master’s thesis in nuclear engineering where he had the opportunity to put the knowledge he had learned during his years of study into practice. His work and capabilities were appreciated and so he has now become part of the Gilardoni team.
The following is an interview conducted during an HR performance review:

Hi Andrea, you’ve been in the working world for a little over a month. How is that going?
I’d say very well!
I’m pumped about the projects I’m involved in and excited about this start.
Certainly, this is not the best time: the Covid19 emergency is setting restrictions (necessary one!) that inevitably slow down work processes and limit contact and direct exchanges with colleagues and we’re facing demands at all levels for greater effort and more energy to be on the ball; with innovative solutions providing quality products and services

When we met during your job interview, you told us that you wanted to see what you had studied in practice. Has that happened? Or, as new graduates often say, “the working world is another story”?
As you know, my academic journey began with a three-year degree in Material Science and Nanotechnology Engineering and then followed with a Master in Nuclear Engineering.
My dream has always been to work in the areas of materials and of radiation, which have fascinated me since I was a child.
Gilardoni does scientific research on materials; it works on a daily basis with radiation applied to various contexts, from medical to industrial, with particular attention paid to safety.
So, I not only found a company that fits with my studies, it also melds perfectly with what I was looking for, nicely fitting together my Bachelor and Master degrees.
And now I can assure you that it’s not the case just on paper!

At your job interview, you also told us that you were unsure about your future: you saw many avenues but had to choose one to start with. Are you happy with the path you’ve begun?
Don’t tell me I’m the only new graduate who’s indecisive about their future?!
One option was doing a Doctorate: I like understanding the reasoning behind how things work, going into details, comparing studies.
At the same time, I wanted to join a company and go beyond understanding at a theoretical level, but also at a practical one about what market demands are, how to transfer what I’ve learned in the business world.
It wasn’t an easy choice: but doing research for a company was a good compromise!
So here I am!
The added value that I’ve already discovered in working in R&D for a company is that stopping at “It doesn’t work because” is not enough, you have to find an alternative solution, an answer for the situation.
It’s as if there were an extra element: we see a tangible application of a study, in fact we actually discover it. And that is even more stimulating!

I also remember that during your job interview you kept repeating that you wanted to see “a small piece” and instead you’ve been catapulted into a big project: LINAC. Have you understood what it’s about?
It’s about a linear particle accelerator: until now, Gilardoni had designed and produced X-ray tubes; with LINAC we take a leap forward because it’s a mechanism that uses the acceleration principle in a totally different way, based on using radiofrequency cavity accelerators. In this way, LINAC is able to reach energy at the MeV level.
Truly challenging as well as innovative!
Gilardoni has to create the architecture to take advantage of electron energy as an x-ray source.
I’ve heard that we will be collaborating with various partners who are recognized leaders in the high-tech sector and that focus on scientific research.

Not bad eh? Does it thrill you? Intimidate you?
I don’t have the details yet, but it’s going to be “something big” so surely complex and complicated in terms of expertise, but I think the Polytechnic gave me solid foundations and I won’t be left to fend for myself, plus Gilardoni has sound experience that allows us to take on this challenge in the best possible way.
I’m not good at describing emotions (I wouldn’t be an engineer after all), but I am very excited about participating in this project. I’m not intimidated, but rather stimulated, curious and impatient to see how it all plays out.

And if I were to ask you now, what you see in your future?
Hah! I don’t think the answer would be that different from the one I gave you at the job interview … The possibilities before me are still numerous. We’re just at the beginning.
What I do know is that I don’t want to become hyper-specialized in any one thing. I want to broaden my areas of operation as much as possible.
Perhaps because I had a wide-ranging study path that almost always allowed me to understand what my various colleagues were talking about (at least the basics, I never started from zero), I’m pretty on the ball.
But maybe it’s also because I’m curious and I like understanding the overall situation, interacting with different organizations and hearing their perspectives. I see myself being able to manage different aspects of a project.
We shall see!

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