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The Institution celebrates its engineering Visionaries

Institution News Team

Georgina Box is presented with an award by President Mark Hunt and Barbara Smith from AMEC
Georgina Box is presented with an award by President Mark Hunt and Barbara Smith from AMEC

The Institution has honoured the achievements of its engineering "luminaries" at its annual Vision Awards ceremony in London.

President Mark Hunt and Barbara Smith from AMEC present Georgina Box with the 2014 IMechE AMEC Clean Energy Europe Undergraduate Scholarship Award.

The Vision Awards celebrates those who, in their work, training or learning, have demonstrated an exceptional commitment to engineering and its future.

Award winners were honoured by Mark Hunt, President of the Institution, and Colin Brown, Director of Engineering at a prestigious ceremony on 24 September 2014 at One Birdcage Walk in London. Hunt congratulated the young, high achieving engineers, who have excelled in their studies and early careers. 

Mark told guests that the winners embodied the spirit of the Institution: “I think our 2014 Visionaries have a very modern outlook on the fast moving, dynamic engineering profession. They are already seeking to inspire those that follow them. Without exception, they are a credit to the profession and it is an honour to recognise them.”

"You are here because you are luminaries with potential. Our future is in your hands," he added.

The Institution’s Visionaries for 2014 were:

  • Undergraduate Visionary – George Scholz, AMIMechE
  • Whitworth Visionary – Dr Ben Hughes, CEng FIMechE
  • EngTech Visionary – Stuart Scott, EngTech MIMechE
  • Young Member Visionary – Siddartha Khastgir, AMIMechE 
  • Modern Day Visionary – Major Oli Morgan, CEng MIMechE
  • Brian Hildrew Apprentice of the Year 2014 – Suzanne Birney
The ceremony also included the presentation of Prestige Awards to leading engineers and the 31st Whitworth Awards Ceremony. It was an occasion to congratulate the 2014 Apprentice of the Year, and to give confirmation of a range of academic grants, including the industry-sponsored IMechE ‘AMEC – Clean Energy Europe’, the IMechE ‘Eaton’ and the IMechE ‘Land Rover Spen King’ Sustainability Award scholarships.

Undergraduate Visionary – George Scholz
The Scholarship Awards Committee grants its awards as part of the Institution’s commitment to the development of young engineers. In the past 10 years, 53 per cent have achieved a first-class Honours degree.

George Scholz, AMIMechE, gained a Masters in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Bath. A former competitor in Formula Student, he is now working with Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), and joined this year’s Formula Student judging panel for the JLR award.

Scholz is now focused on becoming Chartered. He commented: “The award motivates me to continue my involvement with the Institution, and make a positive contribution to engineering.”

President Mark Hunt presents 2014 Undergraduate Visionary George Scholz with his certificate
President Mark Hunt congratulates George Scholz, the Undergraduate Visionary for 2014.

Whitworth Visionary – Dr Ben Hughes
As Trustee of the legacy of Sir Joseph Whitworth, the Institution offers a number of awards each year from the Whitworth Scholarship Trust.

Ben Hughes, CEng FIMechE, a former mechanical engineering apprentice with Shell and now Fellow of the Institution, achieved first-class Honours in Mechanical Engineering and a PhD at Sheffield Hallam University, supported by a Whitworth Senior Scholarship.

After a period of academic work in the Middle East, Ben is now an Associate Professor at the University of Leeds, where he runs the Building Physics research group. He is also the Vice President of the Whitworth Society. He said that gaining recognition from both the Institution and the Whitworth Society was, “an honour”.

Institution President Mark Hunt presents 2014 Whitworth Visionary, Dr Ben Hughes, with his award.

EngTech Visionary – Stuart Scott
In 2013, the Institution was the top register of new Engineering Technicians (EngTech) in the UK. It is committed to increasing the number of registered EngTechs and raising their profile.

Stuart Scott, EngTech MIMechE, is a former Military Technical Training Instructor at the Defence School of Electronic and Mechanical Engineering. During his extensive experience with REME, Scott has ensured that junior soldiers understand the many benefits of professional registration.

As a direct result of his work, over 200 soldiers have joined professional engineering institutions, predominantly as EngTechs.

Scott said of the award: “A lot of the work has been done behind the scenes and in my spare time, so to have recognition from [the Institution] is fantastic.”

Young Member Visionary – Siddartha Khastgir
Awarded by the Young Members Board (YMB) the Young Member Visionary must have demonstrated exceptional activity and commitment in engineering outreach; innovation; inspiring the next generation; or talent development, such as mentoring others.

This year’s Visionary is Siddartha Khastgir, AMIMechE, a much-celebrated volunteer for the Institution’s Southern Asia Region and the India Branch. A former Formula Student competitor, Khastgir has worked in the automotive industry in Germany, and is passionate about finding sustainable solutions to improve lives in the developing world. He is now embarking on a PhD at Warwick University.

Khastgir said: “I am aware that the award brings with it a responsibility and expectation to inspire and be a role model. I hope in a year’s time, as a Young Member Visionary, I will have been able to deliver on the expectations of the Institution and fellow engineers.”

Modern Day Visionary – Major Oli Morgan
This year’s guest speaker at the Vision Awards, Major Oli Morgan, CEng MIMechE, has proved himself as a visionary leader. He successfully gained support for a commercial arrangement between Bloodhound SSC and the army at the highest level of the MoD, co-ordinating the British Army’s involvement in the Bloodhound project.

Morgan, a Chartered Engineer, has held the role of Army Team Leader since 2012 and has trained 120 REME Ambassadors. He passionately believes that army outreach work inspires young people to look at STEM careers in a new way.

Morgan commented: “Engineers take calculated risks as they take steps into the unknown – this is what Bloodhound is all about, and we are here to inspire children to do the same.”

Major Oli Morgan gave an inspiring speech at the Vision Awards ceremony in London.

Brian Hildrew Apprentice of the Year 2014 – Suzanne Birney
Now named after former apprentice and President of the Institution (1980) Brian Hildrew, the winner must display a range of skills: from studying; to the promotion of engineering; exceeding work expectations; and showing a commitment to professional development. 

Suzanne Birney joined Doosan Babcock’s apprenticeship scheme in 2011 at the age of 17, and has gained excellent qualifications and further awards throughout her time with the company. She is now embarking on a degree in Mechanical and Electronic Systems Engineering.

A highly responsible and capable member of the team, Suzanne is a ‘buddy’ to fellow apprentices, and works to encourage girls into the industry.

“Engineering is absolutely key to society,” said Birney. “As technology develops the engineering just becomes more challenging. Everyone needs engineering, even if they don’t recognise it!”

The Apprentice of the Year runners-up were Andrew Cartwright who works for Nuvia and Gerard Brown who works for Rolls-Royce.

President Mark Hunt presents Suzanne Birney winner of the 2014 Bryan Hildrew Apprentice of the Year Award with her certificate.

Prestige Awards
Each year the Institution awards over 400 prizes for outstanding merit and achievement in a variety of fields and areas of expertise.

President Mark Hunt presents Andy Cowell with his certificate
President Mark Hunt congratulates the winner of the 2013 James Clayton Prize, Andy Cowell.

The following Prestige Awards were bestowed at the Vision Awards ceremony:

  • 2014 James Watt International Gold Medal, awarded to Professor Richard Parry-Jones, CBE BSc FREng FIMechE FRSS, for his very significant contributions to vehicle development, and for his technical vision and guidance within the automotive industry.
  • 2013 James Clayton Prize, won by Andy Cowell, CEng FIMechE, for his inspirational leadership at Mercedes-Benz and for his outstanding contributions to engine design and development in the world of Formula One.
  • 2013 Thomas Hawksley Gold Medal, awarded to the authors of the paper, ‘Clinical failure analysis of contemporary ceramic-on-ceramic total hip replacements’: Jan-M Brandt, Trevor C Gascoyne, Leah E Guenther, Andrew Allen, David R Hedden, Thomas R Turgeon and Eric R Bohm. The paper was   published in Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part H: Journal of Engineering in Medicine, Vol 227(8), 2013, pp 833-846.
  • 2013 George Stephenson Gold Medal, awarded to George N Lampeas and Vasilis P Pasialis for the paper, ‘A hybrid framework for nonlinear dynamic simulations including full-field optical measurements and image decomposition algorithms’. The paper was published in The Journal of Strain Analysis for Engineering Design, Vol 48, 2013, pp 5-15.
  • 2013 Award for Risk Reduction in Mechanical Engineering, given to Dr David Ward. Project Manager of the Motor Industry Software Reliability Association (MISRA), Ward was recognised for his outstanding contributions in establishing international standards for system safety.

President Mark Hunt presents Jan-M Brandt, the winner of the 2013 Thomas Hawksley Gold Medal with his award.

The 2013 George Stephenson Gold Medal, was presented to joint winner George N Lampeas by President Mark Hunt.

President Mark Hunt congratulates Vasilis P Pasialis, joint winner of the 2013 George Stephenson Gold Medal.

President Mark Hunt congratulates, Dr David Ward, the winner of the 2013 Award for Risk Reduction in Mechanical Engineering.

Visit our page on the Vision Awards for more information.


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