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The University of Southampton

Joining forces with industry to help educate postgraduate students

Published: 2 June 2014Origin: Mathematical Sciences

More than 70 postgraduates on MSc Operational Research and allied degree programmes in Management Science and Finance have been finding out about potential summer projects from more than 30 companies and organisations offering three month placements in 2014. Each one is an opportunity for a student to gain a real insight into how these analytical management techniques are used in the workplace and a chance for them to put their theoretical knowledge into practice.

This year’s event recognised the contribution of John Ladbrook from Ford Powertrain which supplies engines for Ford vehicles all over the world; he has provided projects since 2003. "This is a very valuable collaboration for the University of Southampton," says Industrial Liaison Officer Dr Ian Rowley. "Over the years, students have tackled a wide range of challenges for John and many have gone on to jobs at Ford. One of our graduates, Qi Zou now leads the simulation department and two projects from 2012 have led to changes in global Powertrain business practice."

Professor Graham Niblo, Head of Maths, presented John with an engraved paperweight to thank him for his contribution to the degree programmes over the years. In accepting the award, John says "These projects are stimulating and benefit both Ford and myself; for the students it is a real opportunity to impress prospective employers". This year Ford is offering five different projects for seven students. The company has also sponsored two PhD students and supported other research applications.

The range of potential projects this year is vast. They include simulation and analysis in areas such as airport valet parking, smart meters, dental services, financial projects and marine logistics. Companies offering placements include Zurich, British Gas, Boeing and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

Some of the students and sponsors attending the Cormsis 2014 Summer project interview day.
Cormsis project interview day 2014
Ian Rowley presenting John Ladbrook from Ford and award for 12 years of sponsoring Cormsis Student Summer projects
Cormsis project interview day 2014
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