Life in a sugar mill feels like home to Michael Simmers.  A recipient of the prestigious Sugar Research Institute Scholarship in 2017, Michael recently completed a work placement at Sunshine Sugar’s Condong Mill and couldn’t be happier with the experience.

“I already feel extremely lucky to be working with engineers who have a wealth of industry experience and their understanding of the variability and diversity of the electrical projects at the mill,” Mr Simmers said.

The Queensland University of Technology electrical engineering student has been able to apply his skills to projects and embrace the positive, supportive work culture at Condong Mill.

“I have a fairly good idea of how the main processes operate, however, each mill is individual along with its employees,” Mr Simmers said.

Condong Sugar Mill electrical engineering superintendent Nigel McDowell said that the work placements provide students with a valuable learning experience plus support the projects being undertaken during their placement.

“Michael’s second placement was very easy to move into due to his first placement experience and the way he has been received by the staff during this placement,” Mr McDowell said.

Sugar Research Institute training and development manager Bruce King said that Michael was one of four successful scholarship recipients’ chosen on their proven ability to work well in a team environment and to create positive practical outcomes.

“Electrical engineering students like Michael are able to apply theory learned from their studies and the processes of problem solving to understand the process of electrical design and testing in real world environments,” Mr King said.

The Sugar Research Institute Scholarship is awarded to students in their penultimate year studying chemical, mechanical, process or electrical engineering or science degrees with an interest in working in the Australian sugar processing industry.

Scholarship recipients undertake three work placements of four weeks in Australian sugar mills during crushing and maintenance seasons.

Applications for the Sugar Research Institute Scholarship close 12 March 2018.

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