Opinion Former Article

Cogent: Nuclear Bursary Programme offers awards up to £4000

The National Skills Academy for Nuclear in partnership with the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), Serco and SBB Nuclear are rolling out a Bursary award scheme. The scheme is aimed at quality individuals on programmes of study relevant to the Nuclear industry, and includes Foundation Degrees, Honours Degrees and Masters Degrees. The programme will provide financial contributions to students, and can be extended to individual modules, Continual Professional Development, HNDs etc. It aims to attract a broader mix of new entrants into the Nuclear industry and into the wider Science and Technology agenda, leading to increased diversity and opportunity in the sector.

The value of the award will be determined by the strength and relevance of the applicant in fulfilling the aims of the programme. The awards given will be in the region of £1,000 - £4,000, and will be dependant on effectively fulfilling the application criteria. Decisions on applications will be made via a panel which will include representatives from the National Skills Academy for Nuclear, NDA, Serco/SSB Nuclear and Higher Education Institution representation.

Applications will be accepted from individuals, these can be supported by employers and Higher Education Institutions. Further details and application forms can be downloaded from www.nuclear.nsacademy.co.uk

Jean Llewellyn Chief Executive of the National Skills Academy Nuclear said:

"Research indicates that the Nuclear sector needs between 5,900- 9,700 graduates over the next 10 years, this is excluding the requirements of New Build in the future. This Bursary demonstrates the employer commitment to the future needs and requirements of their industry and we are happy to roll this out on behalf of the NDA, Serco and SBB Nuclear."

Dr Ian Hudson, Head of Technology and Skills at the NDA said:

"The NDA's grant of £50,000 will enable a significant number of awards to be made at an early stage. It is crucial to our mission that we encourage and develop the right people and skills to meet the future needs of our industry. The nuclear sector holds exciting challenges and rewarding opportunities and support schemes like this will play an important role in attracting quality individuals."

Bob McGuiness, Chief Executive of Serco's Defence Science and Technology Division, said:

"SBB Nuclear and Serco are strong supporters of the National Skills Academy Nuclear. The nuclear industry in the UK is facing many challenges and the availability of the right qualified people is vital for its future. SBB Nuclear and Serco are committed to investing in the skills the training and development of the right people for the industry and are delighted to support the skills academy's bursary award scheme."

Notes to editors

1. The National Skills Academy network will be the new gold standard for industry training, aiming to improve productivity and tackle skills shortages across England. Each National Skills Academy puts employers at the heart of skills training for their sector: they influence the curriculum to ensure it reflects employers' needs; get involved in the Academy's management; set standards and influence strategic direction.

National Skills Academies aim to:

· deliver high quality training for a specific sector

· provide first-class teaching in a modern learning environment

· be centres of innovation and creativity in skills development for their sector

· be flexible, sustaining the closest possible relationships with employers of all sizes

· build specialist networks with a range of other learning providers, so that new thinking, newmethods and higher standards are shared, to the benefit of learners and employers.

The National Skills Academy network was initiated by the Government to address the need for a world class workforce with better skills than ever before. It is managed by the Learning and Skills Council working in partnership with the Department for Innovation Universities and Skills, (DIUS), the Sector Skills Development Agency and the Department for Business, Enterprise, and Regulatory Reform, (DBERR),.

For more information see: www.nationalskillsacademy.co.uk

2. Cogent is the Sector Skills Council for the chemicals, pharmaceuticals, nuclear, oil and gas, petroleum and polymer industries. It is the voice of employers in these sectors and is working with them to create a skills environment that businesses need to be innovative, competent, productive and sustainable.

www.cogent-ssc.com

For further information contact: Judith Cowan on 01925 515 214
judith.cowan@cogent-ssc.com or Mervin Dadd on 01925 515 212
mervin.dadd@cogent.ssc.com

3. The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) is a non-departmental government body established in April 2005 to over see the clean-up and decommissioning of the UK's civil public sector nuclear legacy. For further information contact Brian Hough, Communications Manager on 01925 802177, brian.hough@nda.gov.uk

SBB Nuclear

4. SBB Nuclear is the consortium of Serco, Bechtel and the Babcock and Wilcox Company which has been specifically designed for the opportunity to become the Parent Body Organisation for Sellafield. SBB Nuclear combines the best of British and best of US. All three companies have a proven track record of securely and safely delivering high performance in the nuclear industry through partnership with employees and the local community. Serco is part of the partnership entrusted with the stewardship of AWE. Bechtel has successfully managed nuclear sites in the US and for 25 years and is a leader in nuclear environmental cleanup. Babcock and Wilcox is a US industry leader in nuclear operations and materials. Together the consortium has experience of successful transition at 26 major sites in the UK and in the US.

Serco

5. Serco is an international service company which combines commercial know-how with a deep public service ethos. Serco's people offer operational, management and consulting expertise in the aerospace, defence, education, health, home affairs, local government, science, technology, transport and nuclear sectors. With a turnover of more than £2.5bn, Serco has more than 45,000 employees delivering more than 600 contracts in 35 countries for government and commercial clients, Serco has had an integral role in the UK civil and defence nuclear industries for the past 50 years.

Since 2000 Serco has been entrusted with the management of the UK Atomic Weapons Establishment, which provides the warheads for the UK's independent nuclear deterrent. Serco's assurance business provides specialist technical support to the UK nuclear industry. It provides expert safety, environmental, risk and asset management advice and operational solutions to many of the UK's civil nuclear sites.

Contact us

For more information please go to www.nsacademy.co.uk
or call 01925 607044

Mary Kinsella, Communications Officer

T: 01925 607044, E: m.kinsella@nuclear.nsacademy.co.uk

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