TDK Corporation is pleased to announce that TDK-Lambda UK has been ‘Highly Commended’ at this year’s British Engineering Excellence Awards (BEEAs) under the Engineering Ambassador of the Year category. Organised by the nationally renowned electronics publication, New Electronics, and its engineering counterpart, Eureka, the BEEAs celebrate the very best in British engineering. Veteran broadcaster and STEM enthusiast Johnny Ball presented the certificate to Nick Heighington, Electronics Technician and a STEM Ambassador at TDK-Lambda, during the awards ceremony, which took place at The Honourable Artillery Company (HAC) in London on Thursday 5th October 2017.
“As a design and manufacturing enterprise based in North Devon, some distance from large cities and universities, attracting and retaining sufficient engineering talent can often be difficult,” says Phil Scotcher, General Manager at TDK-Lambda UK.
Engineering and management staff across all areas of the business regularly give their time to get involved with the wide range of STEM initiatives TDK-Lambda supports. Working closely with a range of organisations, the UK manufacturer actively encourages young people to develop valuable technical skills throughout their studies to enhance their future career.
“We first started supporting young people in STEM programmes in 2013,” explains Scotcher. The Engineering Education Scheme (EES), which is a programme run by the Engineering Development Trust (EDT), links teams of A-Level students with local companies to work on STEM projects/problems. TDK-Lambda supported Blundells School in Tiverton on a project to design and build a wind tunnel with air speed and air temperature control.
On average, TDK-Lambda estimates that the number of young people it works directly with is around 300 a year. However, if it were to include the open events, such as careers events, talks and Big Bang, which attract hundreds of young people, this figure would be much higher. The company works with seven schools/colleges/universities on various events, programmes and projects through each year.
TDK-Lambda is also involved with a new undergraduate sponsorship scheme, in collaboration with other members of the NDMA (North Devon Manufacturers Association), including Parker Hannifin and Eaton Aerospace. The undergraduate sponsorship scheme enables A-Level students to receive financial support towards tuition fees when they go on to study STEM-related degrees, in addition to ongoing mentoring. Successful graduates are guaranteed jobs with their sponsor. “Over time, we believe this will result in greater talent retention in the region,” concludes Scotcher.
TDK-Lambda has 25 employees engaged in STEM/School activities, with five STEM Ambassadors, and expects that more STEM Ambassadors will join the scheme in the future.