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Norbord undergraduate gains top honours

Thursday, 03 August 2017

An undergraduate recruit at Norbord’s Inverness plant has received the prize for best final year industrial chemical engineering research project from the University of Strathclyde.

Not only was Allison Day recognised for her outstanding project, which was undertaken during her 14-week placement at Norbord, she also achieved a first with distinction Masters Degree and has been offered a permanent position working on continuous/technical processes.

 Allison’s project was to develop a library data capture system for one of the plant’s production lines. She had to research and implement the system as well as train 24 of Norbord’s managers, supervisors and key operators on how to use it.

 The undergraduate’s thesis was selected as the winner out of 67 submissions by an independent academic panel and she was one of only three to receive the highest overall mark, claiming the £100 prize.

 Allison said: “Norbord's undergraduate placement programme helped me further develop my engineering and interpersonal skills I gained at university. Having a mentor helped me navigate a brand new environment and guide me in the progression of my project.

 “What I enjoyed most was that I got the opportunity to experience other disciplines out with my project. We were always encouraged to broaden our knowledge of the OSB process. All of my colleagues were helpful and supportive and I look forward to working with them all in my new role.”

 Steve McTaggart, Allison’s mentor at Norbord Inverness, said: “Our undergraduate placement programme in partnership with the University of Strathclyde has been a huge success. Allison’s achievements are testament to the hard work and dedication we’ve seen from our students.

 “We pride ourselves in offering a comprehensive programme that enables undergraduates to gain hands on experience while providing them with lots of support in undertaking a strong research project for their thesis.

 “It was a pleasure to work with Allison and we are looking forward to welcoming her back next month in her new permanent role.”

 Jerry Jones, general manager at Norbord Inverness, added: “We are very proud of Allison and I am sure she will prove to be a fantastic asset to our team.

 “As well as helping her to secure this top accolade, Allison’s project has greatly benefitted our plant by developing an efficient data capture system for one of our lines.”

 Dr Ashleigh Fletcher, senior lecturer in Chemical and Process Engineering, said: “The Department of Chemical and Process Engineering highly values the opportunities offered to our students by our industrial partners. We are incredibly proud of Allison's achievement, which reflects her hard work and dedication over the past five years, and wish her every continued success for the future.”