TWO Priestley students have secured highly-sought after spots working with professional scientists, technologists, engineers and mathematicians.
Zohra Najimi and Niamh Smith were two of just 65 students in the North West offered prestigious Nuffield Research Placements lasting up to a month during their summer holidays.
“It will be a great opportunity to get an insight into how professionals in the industry work,” said former Cardinal Newman pupil Zohra.
Niamh, who was at Culcheth High School before Priestley, added: “To secure our places we had to explain why we love our subject and discuss activities we take part in around our main interest.”
Each year Nuffield Research Placements are given to over 1,000 students in their first year of a post-16 science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) study.
The placements are in universities, commercial companies, voluntary organisations and research institutions.
Zohra, who is studying Biology, Chemistry, Maths and English Literature at Priestley, is hoping the placement will help secure her a place at Manchester or Leeds University studying a science degree.
She will be working within the Directorate of Orthoptics and Vision Science at the University of Liverpool comparing a new clinical device to equipment that is currently in use.
Details of Niamh’s placement have not been confirmed yet, but her focus is on studying Geology at Leicester University after she has completed her A-Levels in Chemistry, Maths, Further Maths and Geology.
Head of Chemistry Barbara Schofield said Priestley students achieved Nuffield Research Placements every year and it was the second consecutive year that two had been given the honour.
“Our students have a great record of achieving these places and always take a lot from them,” she said.
“Both Zohra and Niamh will benefit from the experience and it will no doubt help when they come to apply for university places.”
Sharmila Metcalf, Head of Nuffield Research Placements at the Nuffield Foundation, said: “For 20 years, Nuffield Research Placements have been successful in inspiring young people from all backgrounds to pursue higher education and careers in science.
“Zohra and Niamh will work alongside professional scientists, gaining invaluable experience of a research environment that will enhance their university applications and confidence.”