Category Archives: Placements


Another successful SEPnet Students’ Expo

This week the annual Students’ Expo in London provided an opportunity for summer placement students to showcase their projects while on placement through presentations and posters to over 160 employers, academics and fellow students. This year 91 students were successful in finding summer industry and research placements through SEPnet.

The event included morning and afternoon student presentations and poster sessions. Charlotte Lister, our morning speaker, talked about her career journey from SEPnet summer placement student to physics graduate to project manager at Ultra Electronics (through networking at a previous SEPnet Expo!). Students were able to network with employers and exhibitors throughout the day to discuss potential career and job opportunities.

The standard of the presentations and posters gets better every year.  As one employer put it, ‘I thought all the students were really talented and had worked on such a wide range of fascinating projects’.

This year’s keynote address was delivered by Paul Ettinger, physics graduate and Co-founder of Caffe Nero.  Paul gave an inspiring account of his diverse and entrepreneurial achievements in a talk entitled ‘The Physics of Coffee and Music’.

Congratulations to this year’s 6 poster prize winners – Alex Hunter of Queen Mary whose placement was with Black Swan; Madalina Mironiuc of Southampton (Colour Holographic); Stephanie Bennett of Royal Holloway (NPL); Grace Maxted of Kent (Tesla Engineering); Toyah Overton of Royal Holloway (University of Southampton) and Sholto Bateson of Sussex (eOsphere).  Each won a copy of Jon Butterworth’s ‘A Map of the Invisible’ sponsored by the Institute of Physics.

Alex Hunter

Madalina Mironiuc

Sholto Bateson

Stephanie Bennett

Grace  Maxted

Toyah Overton





SEPnet’s annual Expo will celebrate students’ placement success

The annual Students’ Expo takes place on 29 November in London and provides an opportunity for students to showcase their placement projects through presentations and posters to over 150 employers, academic tutors and peers.

This year 91 students from across the SEPnet universities were successful in finding industry and research placements and will present their posters at the Expo.

The event includes morning and afternoon presentations and poster sessions and provides a great opportunity for employers, academics and physics students to network and discuss placements, jobs and collaboration. Prizes, sponsored by Institute of Physics, are offered for the best posters.

This year’s keynote address will be delivered by Paul Ettinger – a physics graduate now entrepreneur and Co-founder of Caffe Nero.

Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre

Winner of SEPnet video competition to Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre describes his life-changing experience

Star City Trip – February 2017

A few weeks ago I got the chance to fulfil a childhood dream of mine, to train as an astronaut alongside the NASA and Roscosmos men and women in the famous Star City training complex. It was a once in a lifetime experience very few have had the privilege to do.

I started my journey retracing the path of old Russian cosmonauts beginning their journey in Moscow, beginning with a visit to the Kremlin and Red Square, the scene of Yuri Gagarin’s celebratory parade from his great return from space in 1961.  I lived in the site’s dorms with our very own British born NASA astronaut, Mike Foale. If you can imagine having a university floor mate who had been to the ISS and who you’d have informal chats with as you brushed your teeth, you’d get a pretty good picture of what staying in Star City is like.

During my stay I was involved in a range of activities from Extra-Vehicular Activity (EVA) suit training by Yuri Gagarin’s actual flight instructor, to wilderness survival training and MIR station training. It was unequivocally one of the best weeks I’ve ever experienced. Hopefully one day I can return, not as an enthusiastic student, but as someone who works directly in sending us humans to the edges of space and beyond.

Kieran Hashmi


SEPnet Summer Placements 2017 – Do you have a project/work experience for a physics undergraduate or PhD?


SEPnet is seeking 8-12 week placement projects in industry or research in areas such as data analysis, mathematic modelling, product design and testing or science communication.

The scheme is aimed at any organisations interested in recruiting physics graduates or who can offer valuable business experience including large companies, SMEs, start-ups, research institutions, charities and NGOs.

• Early access to bright, numerate students with excellent problem-solving and IT skills
• Enables you to carry out projects you would not normally have time for
• Provides a fresh perspective on your business challenges
• All advertising, administration and placement support is handled by SEPnet
• Some funding available for SMEs.

Employers who participate in the scheme include AWE, BAE Systems, CCFE, Good Energy, Leonardo, Met Office, NPL, QinetiQ, STFC and many SMEs.

Register your placement project, or projects, online by Friday 10 February
For more information visit