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Williams Announces 2017 Intake for the Randstad Williams Engineering Academy

27 Sep 2017

Williams has announced the students selected to join the Randstad Williams Engineering Academy, the third intake of students to join this innovative education initiative that sees Williams and Randstad mentor students from around the world as they bid to secure a career as a Formula One engineer.

Eight students were selected from a pool of 25 candidates competing in the 2017 F1 in Schools World Finals held in Malaysia, from 25-27th September. F1 in Schools is a global not-for-profit STEM competition that sees students design, build and race miniature racing cars.

Following a series of practical and written challenges set by Williams engineers, a joint Williams and Randstad assessment panel chose the students that will join the Randstad Williams Engineering Academy from 2017. The students chosen demonstrated the passion, commitment and raw skills needed to join this exclusive programme.

The students were announced during the F1 in School’s World Finals Gala Dinner in Malaysia, by Williams’ Head of Performance Engineering, Rob Smedley, and Randstad Malaysia’s Country Director, Ryan Carroll. The Class of 2017 are:

Michael Farrell, United Kingdom

Richard Grimes, Ireland

Yaren Chakmak, United Kingdom

Soumya Tangirala, United Kingdom

Aaron Morris, United Kingdom

Kyle Winker, Australia

Christopher McKelvain, USA

Aaran Brunning, United Kingdom

In Year One of the Randstad Williams Engineering Academy, students complete a series of motorsport themed e-learning modules that have been developed by Williams. Each student is assigned to an experienced Williams engineer acting as a mentor for the students, guiding them through the e-learning activities and providing advice on a career in motorsport. This is complemented by a number of practical experiences for the students. Randstad uses its extensive experience of global education systems and vocational skills training to help Williams in the ongoing assessment of the students, and also provides practical careers advice and work experience opportunities to the students in their respective home countries.

Launched in 2015, the Randstad Williams Engineering Academy was designed to identify the best and brightest minds from around the world and embed them into our organisation from an early age. The students still attend school and university; our programme supports and goes a step beyond their traditional education. Students involved in F1 in Schools can apply to the Randstad Williams Engineering Academy to be in with a chance of being selected for this exceptional training opportunity. This is a competitive scheme, with each cohort of students gradually whittled down in numbers based on performance criteria and the ultimate goal is for successful graduates of the Academy to join Williams upon completion of their university studies. 

Speaking about this year’s selection process Jakob Andreasen, Chief Operations and Performance Engineer at Williams, said: “I have been really impressed and inspired by all of the students that have taken part in the Randstad Williams Engineering Academy assessment centre. Every day, we as a team have to overcome a number of challenges by working together and communicating well to solve the problems in front of us. And that’s exactly what the students have demonstrated this week.”

Ryan Carroll, Randstad Malaysia’s Country Director, added: “The undersupply of STEM talents is a worldwide issue. We are glad that Randstad can be a part of this meaningful partnership at such an early stage of the students’ academic careers illustrating our commitment to engineering training and recruitment. Hopefully with this, we can address the skills gap and move people and businesses forward. We have all been truly inspired by the young people that have taken part in this week’s Randstad Williams Engineering Academy.”