The Materials Processing Institute has praised the valuable contributions being made by work placement students to its research and development projects.

As a result, it will consider further applications from other high-calibre students wishing to gain experience at its world-leading industrial and materials research facility.

This year the Teesside-based campus hosted four students. Two, Robert Hillier and Ben Napier, are recipients of the Millman Scholarship, which is delivered by the Institute in collaboration with the Worshipful Company of Armourers and Brasiers.

The scholarship programme offers students from the Tees Valley a range of practical and academic support throughout their degree course, including an annual bursary, paid industrial work placement at the Institute, as well as mentoring support.

The Institute also provides both ‘Year in Industry’ and vacation placements for talented science and engineering students in the fields of advanced materials, the circular economy, industrial decarbonisation, and digital technologies.

Gerard Stephens, the Institute’s Director Operations, said: “Students work on live projects, generating value for the Institute and its clients, while gaining real industrial experience to augment their academic studies. Students completing a placement at the Institute are well placed for securing a graduate position with the Institute on completing their degree.”

He added: “All four students have made valuable contributions and the Institute welcomes applications for vacation and Year in Industry work placements from other high-calibre students.”

Thomas Hughes, of Middlesbrough, is studying Chemical Engineering at Newcastle University, and recently began his 12-month placement with the Circular Economy Group, researching the pre-processing of steel slag, blast furnace slag and other materials within past metallurgical sites.

He said: “The Materials Processing Institute is providing me with some real-world work experience before completing my masters and getting a job. The work I am involved with here is extremely interesting and has the potential to benefit not only Teesside, but to make an impact globally.”

Jamie Hoar, of Horsforth, Leeds, spent August with the Industrial Decarbonisation Group. He is studying MEng Chemical / Process Engineering at the University of Nottingham and he worked on a complex multi-national project, involving waste recovery and land remediation.

Robert Hillier, of Ingleby Barwick, carried out a varied portfolio of work over his eight weeks with the Advanced Materials Group, including sample preparation and optical and electron microscopy. He is studying MEng in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Sheffield.

Ben Napier, of Guisborough, who is studying Natural Sciences at Durham University, returned to the Institute for his second placement and worked in the Digital Technologies Group, carrying out a significant amount of research into Industrial Internet of Things platforms.