Australia’s most prestigious scholarship for the sugar processing industry is now open to applications.

The Sugar Research Institute Scholarship is awarded to four undergraduates each year studying engineering or science at an Australian university or tertiary institution.

Students in their penultimate year studying mechanical, chemical or electrical engineering with an interest in working in an Australian sugar mill will be in most demand for scholarship projects in 2016.

In 2015, scholars gained valuable learning experience of process systems and machinery, insights into the maintenance requirements of a sugar factory, and opportunities to apply theory on real projects that improve process efficiency, sugar quality and plant design.

James Cook University mechanical engineering student Brendan Tabone was one of four scholars to be awarded the prestigious Sugar Research Institute Scholarship in 2015, and completed his first work placement at Sunshine Sugar’s Broadwater Sugar Mill.

According to Mr Tabone, the Sugar Research Institute Scholarship has allowed him to expand his knowledge and form relationships with people in the industry and expand employment opportunities.

“I have always had an interest in working within the sugar industry upon graduation of my course and into the future,” Mr Tabone said.

“The complexity of sugar mills means that as an engineer you will never stop learning and expanding your professional knowledge.

“Sugar Research Institute has provided an excellent platform for students to do this, bridging the gap between industry and students to facilitate learning for students in the sugar industry.”

Scholarship recipients undertake three work placements of four weeks in Australian sugar mills during crushing and maintenance seasons and also receive $7,500 plus wages and allowances.

In addition to financial and work placement support, the scholarship program helps recipients to make the most of their university experience through extra development opportunities by building their leadership skills and professional networks.

Occupations for graduates in the sugar processing industry typically include maintenance planners, production superintendents, electrical engineers, factory managers, chief chemists and engineering managers.

Sugar Research Institute operates on a not-for-profit basis and is owned and supported by the Australian sugar industry. SRI’s understanding of the science of sugar processing helps sugar mills and refineries worldwide to maximise sugar recovery, and to deliver best practice in process efficiency and plant design.

Applications close 18 March 2016.

For more information contact Alison Clift on 07 5414 2505 or visit