Recruiting in science, particularly into engineering and computing, is increasingly difficult. The skills gap in STEM subjects is a real worry for scientific institutes and skilled industry, and could present a risk to operations in future years if talented students of all ages – from school through university and beyond – are not nurtured and encouraged to experience the diverse range of rewarding and challenging career opportunities available.
Our schemes here at Diamond tie in with national efforts to ensure that students are aware of careers in STEM subjects, and we hope the 14 year olds who first encounter us through work experience will choose to take a path which leads them back here as scientists, engineers or programmers in the future.
Diamond has expanded its commitment to supporting young and emerging scientists with a new school work experience programme for 14-18 year olds, launched this summer. The scheme will initially see 20 students, expanding to 30 in future years, from local schools and colleges, attend a week long programme at the facility. This programme includes unique opportunities to get behind the scenes and learn about Diamond, and to undertake a real project with one of our teams. The projects available represent all major groups at Diamond, with engineers, scientists and support teams all offering places.
Work experience is a vital way for a student to understand what a career in STEM could look like, and understand the broad range of opportunities available. We are proud to be hosting the scheme, and will be reporting back in future issues on the impact the programme has had on the students.
The work experience programme continues the work started with our summer studentship scheme for undergraduates, which will host 26 students in summer 2015. With almost 600 applicants this year, the scheme continues to grow in profile. Another new addition for 2015 will be 12 month sandwich placements, where undergraduates will undertake extended projects with the facility. The 12 month placements aim to nurture specialist talent.
Mark Heron, Diamond’s Controls Group leader will be hosting both summer placement students and students on a 12 month sandwich placement in 2015. Mark says: “The student placements are a great way of ensuring that we are able to recruit the best students into our graduate roles, while supporting students who are looking to get a taste of life in a scientific environment. It’s great to promote the fantastic career opportunities available at big facilities and institutes like Diamond”.
Education programme and school work experience reaching 3,000+ students each year.
Summer placements and 12 month sandwich opportunities. Visits and tours for hundreds of students each year.
Supported studentships, and strong links with Centres for Doctoral Training across the UK. Bespoke tours and visits for PhD student groups.
Diamond Light Source is the UK's national synchrotron science facility, located at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire.
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