Belzona, global designer and manufacturer of polymeric repair and protection materials, hosted nine future engineering leaders from the Arkwright Engineering Scholarships programme at its Harrogate (UK) facility. The event, entitled ‘Engineering for a Sustainable Future’, was held on Friday 14th April, with the scholars travelling from as far as Somerset and Edinburgh to attend.
The Arkwright Engineering Scholarships programme is run by the Smallpeice Trust which aims to identify, inspire and nurture future leaders in engineering. The programme is widely recognised as being the most esteemed scholarship of its kind for engineering students.
Belzona sees the next generation as integral to realising their newly-launched mission statement: promoting ‘Polymeric Solutions for a Sustainable Future’. The Company promotes sustainability in industry by developing polymeric technology for the maintenance and protection of industrial equipment, thus avoiding its unnecessary and costly replacement.
“It was great to host the Arkwright Industry Connect Day here in Harrogate, investing time and offering developing engineers an insight to the roles available within STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). We hope that the scholars found it beneficial to learn about how Belzona is used across many industries.”
Steve Kay, Private Sector Partnerships Manager with the Smallpeice Trust education charity, added: “As part of our Arkwright scholarship programme, Belzona’s Industry Connect Day gave nine talented aspiring engineers a great opportunity to engage in real world industrial scenarios. The presentations and practical hands-on applications from the company provided a thoroughly entertaining day. It was also a great example of Belzona’s continuing commitment to collaboration, innovation and nurturing future talent. Everyone left enthused and appreciative of a thoroughly enjoyable and well organised event.”
Belzona devised an agenda designed to provide the scholars with an insight into the career opportunities within maintenance engineering. Sam Gumbley, Research & Development Technician, spoke about his career path from joining the Company as a school leaver to receiving the British Coatings Federation Student of the Year Award last year.
Cecile Callisen, Regulatory Affairs Supervisor, also spoke to scholars regarding careers in the industry outside of engineering, emphasising the extensive range of backgrounds, specialisms and skills which are welcomed in businesses such as Belzona. After introductory presentations on Belzona’s work and success stories, attendees were taken on a behind-the-scenes tour of the state-of-the-art Harrogate facilities.
In the afternoon, the scholars took part in a practical session where they had the opportunity to apply Belzona’s polymeric products first-hand. Amongst other demonstrations, attendees repaired damaged pipework using a Composite Wrap and worked with a chemical-resistant coating, Belzona 5811 (Immersion Grade).
James Waine, 17, said: “It was very interesting to learn about the variety of different applications in the morning, but my favourite part was the practical session. Getting hands-on experience with Belzona products really helped us to visualise and understand how they are used in real life situations.”
Supporting charity projects in both the local and STEM communities has been a long-term priority for Belzona. Henry Smith, UK Technical Supervisor, volunteered as an interviewer in the Arkwright Engineering Scholarships application process in 2022, while the Company regularly participates in initiatives around North Yorkshire such as its ongoing partnership with the White Rose Forest.
The event aimed to provide scholars with a valuable insight into the world of maintenance engineering, and Belzona hopes that the event can aid the development of many promising careers.
Here are some of the best images from the event:
Belzona is dedicated to supporting talented individuals into successful careers and has set up a Training and Development Programme designed for students with A-levels/similar qualifications.
Want to learn more about the Training and Development Programme?
Content Creator, Belzona Polymerics Limited