I am currently working on a master's degree in robotics. I have a job as part of a work study program from a French school. During the interview, I was presented with plenty of interesting robotics projects that were to start soon at the company. Due to the difficulty of finding a work/study program and the interesting work done by the company, I took the job.
However, I have been set up in the corner facing the wall working on database administration for 9 months now. Granted, there's data involved in robotics, but it is not my main field of study and I have only had introductory courses on the subject. I have "figured it out" and come up with something that works, but probably not done things "the right way" because I have basically no schooling on the subject. Nobody else in the company knows any better than me though (this is a completely new field for the company) so no one can guide me or point out my mistakes. Since no body knows what is possible or even really what is needed (they're calling this R&D) I am stuck with really vague tasks and no clear objectives. I have made it clear to everyone I can (it has become a running joke in the office that my situation is so ridiculously pathetic) that I need clear objectives and a timeline, but no word from anyone, even when asked explicit questions. So that's problem number 1 : I'm trying my best to do something that I know basically nothing about and no one seems to care.
Problem 2: There seem to be no concrete plans to move me into the types of projects I was told about in the interview. Managers keep telling me "there are currently no robotics projects", but I see the robots on the factory floor, so I'm guessing they don't trust me with "real" projects yet, that have real impact on their bottom line. As it stands though, I'm getting experience in a field which I have no intention of working in and even worse not getting experience in my field of study. I have spoken to my manager, my "tutor" (person assigned to help me in the company), and my school and no one seems too intent on helping me here. My tutor jus seems super overworked and literally answer "I don't know" to 90% of my questions, and my manager has said it irritates him and he finds me very rude for always coming to him with questions. My school has been basically unresponsive (not just on this matter, using Covid as an excuse for never answering emails etc, don't even have my grades back so I can't transfer elsewhere).
Problem 3: My company is now looking to hire someone to do what I do. Which doesn't sound like a problem, because I don't want to be doing it anyway, but now, with no clear objective for my project, and knowing someone (an actual programmer and web developer) is already working on making everything I do obsolete, I don't know how to continue. I have a 2 year contract as part of my school, so I don't really fear for my job, but I do fear for my sanity. As it stands, I have been at a stand still for months, doing everything short of going postal to try to get the situation moving, but no signs that things will improve.
What are my options to get on the right track and be assigned work that will have meaningful overlap with my studies?