Our successful Scholarship Scheme is at the heart of the UKESF. Over the last 10 years, we have supported over 600 excellent Electronics students from leading universities. Many of these are now flourishing as graduate engineers, working for companies across the Electronics sector. Rightly, we are very proud of all of our graduates and we wish them all every success in their future careers. As we conclude this series of posts celebrating our 10th Anniversary, we wanted to highlight the notable achievements of some of these former UKESF Scholars.

Mary Bennett

Mary (UKESF Scholar 2016–20) studied at the University of Surrey, was sponsored by Embecosm and in 2019 was jointly named our Scholar of the Year. During her industry placement, she designed and created an open source, educational resource to be used at Chip Hack and in schools, as well as speaking at ORConf – the first woman to do so in the six-year history of the conference. Mary continues to work for her sponsor company following graduation, as a Compiler Engineer.

Emma Curati-Alasonatti

Emma (UKESF Scholar 2014–17) studied at the University of Southampton, where she graduated with a First Class MEng in Electronic Engineering. In 2018 she was awarded Young Engineer of the Year at the TechWorks Awards, and in 2019 made EW’s BrightSparks list for her graduate project and her volunteering. During her Scholarship Emma was sponsored by Arm, where she is now an Electronic Engineer, having worked there since graduation. In 2017, Emma wrote a brilliant guest blog post for us on gender imbalance in the Electronics sector, titled ‘Where are the queues for the loos?’.

Yanislav Donchev

Yanislav (UKESF Scholar 2018–20) studied at the University of Southampton and was sponsored by Qualcomm Technologies. In 2019, he won our Embedded Systems Competition and was also named one of EW’s BrightSparks for a variety of achievements, including a device he created at university and his incredible outreach work. In 2020, Yanislav wrote a guest blog post for us on his air drumming project and in 2021 volunteered his time to write the extensive user guide for our new Insight into Electronics project. Yanislav is now a Software Engineer at one of our sponsor companies, Graphcore.

Max Holland

Max (UKESF Scholar 2013–15) studied at the University of York and was sponsored by Arm, where he accepted a position following graduation and is now a Senior Engineer. In an interview with us, he said, “I was awarded a Scholarship in the third year of my degree so the following summer I completed an internship at my sponsoring company and attended the UKESF Scholar Workshop. I found both experiences extremely useful in gaining skills to use in completing my final year of study; learning first-hand about the industry and developing my engineering skills, which have been valuable in returning to work as a graduate.”

Nathan Ruttley

Nathan (UKESF Scholar 2014–16) studied at the University of Southampton and was sponsored by NVIDIA. He made the 2019 EW BrightSparks list for his work on an energy- and money-saving device. Later that year, Nathan started a boutique consultancy company, Embedism, offering affordable prototyping and electronics+firmware development for start-ups. At the start of the pandemic, thanks to his industry contacts and fully kitted-out workshop, Nathan was able to cheaply source materials and use his laser cutter to cut visors at a rate of around one every 2 minutes. In April 2020 he had already made over 1,700 headbands and distributed them to volunteers for final assembly and distribution to their local NHS facilities.

Joanna Taylor

Joanna (UKESF Scholar 2013–17) studied at the University of Bristol, was sponsored by Imagination Technologies and in 2016 was awarded our Scholar of the Year. Joanna now works as a Silicon Product Engineer at UKESF sponsor company Graphcore. In 2019, Joanna told our supporter IC Resources what advice she would give young women looking to break into Engineering today: “I’d tell them to not be afraid or shy. If Engineering is what you want to do, then be enthusiastic about it and don’t be afraid to ‘boast’ on your CV. I’ve found that many women aren’t very good at ‘showing off’ their achievements, even when what they’ve achieved is really amazing.”

Ricki Tura

Ricki (UKESF Scholar 2016–20) studied at the University of Southampton and was sponsored by UltraSoC (recently acquired by Siemens). In 2018 he was awarded our Scholar of the Year, and in 2019 was named an EW BrightSpark for this and a document-generating tool he created, as well as his position as president of Southampton’s 2,000-strong Electronics & Computer Science Society, having doubled the society’s participation at industry partner events. Ricki has worked for his sponsor company since graduation and is now a Hardware Design Engineer.