A persistent shortage of polymer engineering talent in Ireland has prompted the launch of a new scholarship programme in AIT, the JL Goor Polymer Engineering Scholarships. These scholarships will enable two CAO applicants to pursue a polymer degree qualification while receiving a bursary of €1,000 for each for their three years of study.
The Institute of Materials (IOM), Minerals and Mining; Polymer Group South, Ireland announced the launch of the JL Goor Scholarship in AIT which is open to entry for 1st year students planning to pursue a polymer degree qualification. Speaking at the launch of the scholarships Joe Wall, Sales Director at JL Goor Materials commented, “The IOM Polymer Group is delighted to enable these Scholarships. The polymer processing industry is one of the few manufacturing sectors that is really thriving and it is in need of high calibre students coming through to fill the demand from companies. AIT have a long tradition of supplying well qualified polymer students and we want to continue to foster and recognise this excellence”
There is currently a shortage of polymer graduates in the industry and this shortage has been highlighted in both the Forfas/Expert Group on Future Skills Needs report on
the Future Skills Requirements of the Manufacturing Sector to 2020 and the Action Plan for Jobs 2013. Career opportunities for graduates in the sector’s 250 companies are exceptionally strong, given that 18 of the world’s top 25 medical device companies are located in Ireland, alongside a thriving indigenous base.
Louis Goor, Director at JL Goor added, “As JL Goor we are excited at this opportunity to recognise and support the polymer students at AIT. We know first-hand the value of this course as we have three past students employed. The growth of our industry is dependent on a continuous flow of able, ambitious polymer engineers and we hope to encourage this with these Scholarships.”
Mechanical and Polymer Engineering is one of the most popular courses in the Faculty of Engineering & Informatics in the Institute due to the hugh industry demand and guaranteed jobs at the end of the degree programme. The polymer/medical devices sector in Ireland is thriving and is recognised as one of the fastest developing in the world. In excess of 250 companies are currently developing and manufacturing a diverse range of medical devices and diagnostic products. The sector employs a highly skilled workforce – over 45% of employees in the medical device sector are qualified to graduate or postgraduate level.
Dr Austin Hanley, Dean of Engineering & Informatics said that ‘We are very grateful to JL Goor and the Institute of Materials for providing these very generous student awards. The scholarships provided is further endorsement of the importance that graduates of this programme are to the Plastics and Polymer industry. It is clear that AIT are national leaders in both graduate and post-graduate polymer education. I hope that such endorsement will alert Leaving Certificate students to the opportunities available to graduates’.
He went on to say that the Mechanical and Polymer engineering honours degree programme is tailor made for the expanding medical device and polymer processing industries and that graduates are in very high demand. The programme which has extremely close ties with industry also enables students to undertake an 8 months placement commencing in January of year 3. The placement will facilitate students in gaining an insight into industrial practices in their area of specialisation.
The scholarships are awarded from the IOM and JL Goor. The Scholarship will be awarded based on Academic Merit & Personal Achievement. The scholarship recipient shall receive a bursary of €1,000 for each of the remaining three years of study towards a polymer engineering degree pending continued good academic standing.
About the Sponsors –
The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3) is a major engineering institution whose activities encompass the whole materials cycle, from exploration and extraction, through characterisation, processing, forming, finishing and application, to product recycling and land reuse. Their mission is to promote the science, design, engineering and technology of materials, minerals and mining and their practical applications and facilitate qualifications, professional recognition and development, and to deliver knowledge, information and networking services to a global membership and wider community.
JL Goor is a company that has supplied the Irish Polymer market with machinery, equipment and polymer materials with over 30 years. The machinery business was the start. As the fledgling Irish polymer processing industry took-off in the early 1980’s so did the JL Goor business, with John Goor building a portfolio of equipment to offer. As the business grew John was approached by some customers to find out if he could help them with some polymer sourcing problems.
The next stage for JL Goor was to begin building up some polymer expertise and to further strengthen the machinery side. Louis Goor joined his father on the machinery side and Gearoid Clarke, with his Polymer Science background provided the polymer know-how. As polymer sales grew it was decided to form a sister company – JL Goor Materials, to focus exclusively on this area.
JLGoor has always supported education and continuous professional development in the plastics industry, a tradition they continue with the launch of the IOM3 JLGoor Scholarship.
Photo - Left to right - Dr Austin Hanley Dean of Engineering & Informatics, Gearoid Clark MD, JL Goor Material Ltd, Joe Wall IOM Ireland South , Louis Goor, MD, JL Goor Ltd, Joe Lawless Head of Department Polymer, Mechanical, Civil Engineering and Trades.
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