The University of Southampton

Outstanding success for ECS in UKESF Awards

Published: 22 November 2013

For the second time in three years, an ECS student has won the title ‘Scholar of the Year’ awarded by the UKESF (UK Electronic Skills Foundation).

Ashley Robinson, final-year student on the MEng programme, Electronic Engineering with Artificial Intelligence, received the award at the National Microelectronics Institute annual dinner, held last night (21 November) in London.

It was a double success for Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton, since Adam Malpass, ECS Electronics graduate from 2012, was named Young Engineer of the Year. Adam, who now works for Dialog Semiconductor, was the first winner of the 'Scholar of the Year' title in 2011.

The UK Electronic Skills Foundation is a collaboration between public bodies, private companies and universities. In addition to connecting employers with students in schools and universities, it runs an annual scholarship programme in which ECS students have been outstandingly successful. The scholarships also include work placement opportunities with leading companies, as well as high-level summer schools with industry participation.

Ashley has held a UKESF Scholarship since 2012 and has undertaken two work placements with Cambridge Silicon Radio, where he has been actively involved in developing NFC chips and LCD controllers. Ashley has also been engaging A-level students at his former school in Hampshire in order to encourage them to experiment with electronics at home. As part of this Ashley has organised lectures for sixth form students, participated in their studies and provided electronics hardware that had been developed at the University of Southampton for them to use.

On winning the award Ashley said: “The scholarship has been a great addition to my academic life, and my experience with CSR and the UKESF professional development workshop will prove invaluable as I start my career when I graduate next year. Through the scholarship I've been able to connect with industry and with other like-minded engineers, so I appreciate the level of competition I was up against to get this award, it's a great honour.”

The accolade of ‘Young Engineer of the Year’ awarded to Adam Malpass is the second award he has received in recent weeks, following his commendation at the 2013 British Engineering Excellence Awards for the title of ‘Young Design Engineer of the Year'. Adam visited ECS earlier this week when he was part of the Dialog team that presented a session on an LED-lit future to the IEEE Student Branch.

Southampton’s success in the UKESF Scholar of the Year title can be gauged from the fact that of the eight finalists in the competition over the last three years, four are from ECS: Adam Malpass (Dialog Semiconductor), Tom Dell (McLaren Electronics), Sam Hipkin (ARM), and Ashley Robinson.

‘We are extremely proud of our students’ success,’ said Professor Neil White, Head of Electronics and Computer Science. ‘In our research and our teaching we are committed to making advances of fundamental importance and value to the UK’s electronics industry, and we are delighted to see our students keen to apply the skills they have learned at Southampton with some of the world’s leading electronics companies.’

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