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Published: 11 April 2017

Two Mechanical Engineering Sciences students win Royal Academy scholarship

The Royal Academy of Engineering has awarded Engineering Leaders Scholarships to Alex Gleed and Billy Cavanagh – bringing the number of Surrey Mechanical Engineering Sciences undergraduates to win this prestigious award to four within the past four years.

The Royal Academy’s Engineering Leaders Award aims to help ambitious and inspiring engineering undergraduates, who want to become leadership role models for the next generation of engineers, to undertake an accelerated personal development programme.

As recipients of the Engineering Leaders Scholarship, Alex Gleed (studying for an MEng Medical Engineering – now MEng Biomedical Engineering) and Billy Cavanagh (MEng Mechanical Engineering) each receive £5,000 to be spent over the next few years on career development activities such as training, conferences and travel abroad. The students applied for the scholarship with the encouragement of Dr Nicole Rockliff (Director of Learning and Teaching in the Department of Mechanical Engineering Sciences) and had to give a detailed outline of the professional experience they have already gained as well as their future career development plans.

One of the aspects which particularly impressed the Awards judges, for both students, was their leadership and team working performance while on their Professional Training placements. Alex, working at DePuy Synthes, a medical engineering company specialising in joint reconstruction, has helped to drive forward the success of key projects as well as mentoring other developing engineers who are new to the business. Billy has spent his placement in Germany and Austria at AVL – a world leading developer of powertrain systems, instrumentation and simulation tools – where his projects have included finding solutions to improve the production of F1 components.

Alex says: “I was absolutely ecstatic when I found out that I had been successful and couldn’t quite believe it. The Academy is a hugely influential body in engineering, and getting the scholarship will help me immensely in my future career. The mentoring and development I’ve received from both Surrey and DePuy Synthes has been so helpful. I’m hoping to use some of the scholarship funding to attend technical training courses and get additional experience working in industry.”

Billy comments: “The training, development and experience I’ve had at Surrey over the past few years, as well as working abroad for AVL, have helped define me as an engineer and as a person. I’m going to use some of the funding to continue to learn and improve my German and towards a summer placement next year – hopefully working abroad in the motorsport industry.”

Explore our programmes in Mechanical Engineering, including our MEng and BEng Biomedical Engineering.