Aspiring engineers from Furness College and Barrow Sixth Form College have been recognised for their academic achievements by Barrow and District Association of Engineers at the annual bursary awards.
Students from local schools and colleges shared a total of more than £5,000 in prize money after being nominated by their tutors for the prestigious awards.
The bursaries are presented annually to students who show an aptitude for engineering to encourage them to continue in education and pursue this career path and this year’s event was hosted in a live Zoom call.
A Level student Izzy Rodger won the top award – ‘best of the best’ – and an extra £100 in prize money to add to his £300 while fellow Barrow Sixth Form College student Connor McLoughlin also picked up a £300 bursary prize. Both are high flying
Honours students at the Rating Lane campus.
Daniel Woods, who works as an technical engineering apprentice at Barrow-based company K Salisbury and is studying a HNC, and mechanical engineering student Sam Byrne, who both study at Furness College’s Channelside campus, were also among the winners. They were presented with their £300 awards by Ian Muldowney, who is BAE Systems leading aircraft design engineer and a leader in his field.
Izzy’s tutors said he was an ‘exemplary student’ and is applying to study a degree in natural sciences at Cambridge University with a view to a career in design engineering.
“He is intellectually curious, full of ideas, hardworking, academically able, a clear communicator and an excellent undergraduate candidate. A dedicated student, Izzy took time during lockdown to compete for and win a national design engineering competition by BAE Systems Ltd, which attracted interest from local media and he subsequently undertook media interviews speaking articulately about his project,” his nomination said.
Sam’s tutors nominated him as a very conscientious student saying ‘an engineering company would be lucky to employ him’ and that he was aiming for an apprenticeship with BAE Systems.
The Zoom event was also attended by former Barrow Sixth Former Cameron Pollock who was runner up in the association’s university scholarship this year and joined the call from his halls at Loughborough University.
Head of Barrow Sixth Form College Helen Gibson said: “It was a brilliant evening and it is testament to the quality of our staff and students that they had such a hard time to pick an overall winner as there were some amazingly high calibre candidates.
Izzy is such a worthy winner and also asked questions in the lecture that followed – he even took time to Teams me during the presentation to say thanks for the nomination.
Denis Lidstone, of BDAE who organises the bursary scheme, said: “This year we moved to a virtual platform but there was still such a great atmosphere of celebration in the Zoom room to mark the achievements of these remarkable young people.
“We hope they will be encouraged to continue a lifelong journey of learning in their chosen fields of engineering and we hope they will bring their skills and knowledge to Furness and be a part of the world-class engineering we have here in the future.”
He said BDAE was also introducing a new award in 2021 for Year 6 pupils to encourage studying STEM subjects after primary school.