My first month (and a half) at Optima Systems

Sam ThompsonOptimaLeave a Comment

Looking back on my first month and a bit at Optima the time seems to have rushed by. With this being my first job in IT, I was not sure what exactly to expect but with the support of all the team I’m enjoying my work and the challenges it brings.

My background

I’ve always been interested in computers, ever since playing video games on the old family computer when I was a child. Taking ICT during my GCSE’s and Computing during my A-Levels was only the beginning as I studied at the University of Sheffield for before dropping out at the end of the second year. Whilst I enjoyed living in Sheffield I was at odds with a few of the University modules and decided that I wanted to get some practical experience with an established company.

My midweek visit

About two weeks before I started my first official day at Optima I was invited to visit the Offices on a Wednesday to meet all the staff, including Gil who was visiting from Sweden to run a workshop. It was good to be introduced to everyone and, although limited in my APL knowledge, it was certainly interesting learning from the workshop. The pizza ordered for lunch didn’t hurt either! Although I was only there for a few hours it was a good indication of the work I would end up doing and a valuable day.

The first week

I was rather nervous on my first day but after being let in by Kim and having a chat with her I was instantly put at ease. The first week was rather intense with lots of information and introductions but overall was a positive experience. Learning about APL and its application was interesting while experimenting with it was a lot of fun. I spent time with every member of staff learning about their backgrounds and the different types of work that they do day-to-day.


There have been numerous highlights during my time so far, meeting Gil (for the second time) and his COSMOS workshop, completing my first project in APL and the end of my first week being a few of them.


My time with Optima so far has been a very enjoyable experience so far and I look forwards to my continued learning and the good times ahead.

About the Author

A picture of Sam Thompson, the author of this blog

Sam Thompson

Apprentice APL Developer

Sam was an apprentice APL Developer at Optima Systems. He has had a keen interest in computers since he was a child who loved playing video games on his family’s computer. After taking Maths, Further Maths and Computing during A-levels he attended the University of Sheffield doing Computer Science for two years.

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