Category Archives: Uncategorized

14Jul/16

GRADnet Entrepreneurship Challenge – Winners announced

Our dynamic modern world presents interesting and exciting opportunities for those who want to get involved and add value to the economy and society. Entrepreneurship is a key and Research Councils encourage PhD students to have a better understanding of its role in value creation and the role of innovation in fostering it. Earlier this year, GRADnet launched its Entrepreneurship in Action Challenge tailored for Physics PGRs in SEPnet to get involved. Elaine Hickmott of EH-Enterprises developed the programme especially for GRADnet.

As  part of the Challenge, SEPnet institutions were invited to form teams of PGR researchers to compete to be the most entrepreneurial physics department in SEPnet. Teams were formed from Kent, Portsmouth, QMUL, Southampton, Surrey, and  Sussex.

In the six months since the teams formed they have undertaken an exciting, and sometimes gruelling, journey to develop their ideas into marketable proposals. Unfortunately along the way, some teams dropped out due to research commitments. However they gained valuable experience from the intensive training provided.

The teams from across the network gathered on 13 July to present their business ideas to a panel industry judges.  Neil Phillipson of Outsideology, Simon Bland of Reigate and Banstead Borough Council and Phil Edwards of Weald Technology were all impressed by the quality, credibility and potential of the ideas being showcased.  They commented that it was impressive to see physics PhD students applying their skills to challenges and scenarios outside of their normal environment.  They agreed that the creative thinking and entrepreneurial mindset demonstrated by the teams would be an asset to any industry or organisation.

The teams were from Portsmouth (Daniel Goddard and Ben Mawdsley, who sent a video of their project), Southampton (Azaria Coupe, Anthony Preston, Andrew Lawson, and Marc Scott), and two teams from Surrey (Ralitsa Ilieva and Gemma Chapman; Bob Simmons and Louise Dummot).

 

Winning Team from Southampton. Azaria Coupe was unable to be present.

Winning Team from Southampton. Azaria Coupe was unable to be present.

The winning team came from the University of Southampton and they are looking forward to spending their cash prize.  The achievements of all the teams were celebrated at the follow-on networking event which brought together the students and local entrepreneurial businesses.Azaria Coupe, who led the winning team, has written an article on her blog.

All the teams thoroughly enjoyed the challenge, having learnt a lot about innovation, business and themselves.

 


10Feb/16

Do you have a project/work experience for a physics undergraduate?

SEPnet Summer Placements 2016

The scheme                                                                                                          

SEPnet organises an annual placement scheme for physics students at SEPnet Partner universities and is seeking 8-week plus projects in industry or research in areas such as data analysis, mathematic modelling, product design and testing or science communication.

Who can apply?                                                                                                          

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.

 Benefits to employers

  • 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 is available for SMEs

What employers have said:

‘Very satisfied with the whole process, organised and straightforward, with good students.’

‘We took SEPnet students for the second year running and have been very impressed with the calibre, their capabilities and the general high standard. For your records we have just made a permanent job offer to one of the students…’.

For more information:                                                                                                

Click here for further information. Register your placement project, or projects as soon as possible, online here.  Email veronica.benson@sepnet.ac.uk

11Nov/15

SEPnet Collaborative PhDs

Research Projects for Ambitious SMEs at an affordable budget

Access quality PhD students for research you define in:

  • Numerical Modelling

or

  • Detectors

at £8K per year*

Work with industry focussed academics

* excluding VAT. Typically a PhD would cost you £30K per year excluding VA

 Benefits

  • Help define, and benefit directly from, research that underpins a technology problem you have
  • Collaborate to tackle research that is pre-competitive
  • Directly access  PhD research and students  at an affordable price

 How it works

  • Collaborative research projects consisting of a small group of SMEs, quality academics and a dedicated PhD student will be formed
  • Each PhD project will be defined and guided by the SME group and academics
  • Collaborating with 3 other SMEs reduces costs to around £8K pa for a 3-year programme
  • PhDs to start in October 2016
  • Project definition and consortia will be formed in Q4 2015 and Q1 2016

Register your interest here: http://sepnetphd.instapage.com/

GRADnet Summer School

Students at a GRADnet Summer School

“As a sponsor we were able to influence the direction of research, understand the analytical and experimental capabilities of the University and assist the Research Engineer in aligning their efforts to both a practical and very demanding application. It has, without doubt, given our company a competitive edge.”

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Professor Steve Burnage, Chief Design Engineer, Lockheed Martin