The University of Southampton

ECS students and researchers win prestigious awards from National Microelectronics Institute

Published: 24 November 2015

Staff and students from the University of Southampton won two prestigious awards at the National Microelectronics Institute annual dinner and prizegiving event, held last week (19 November) in London.

Final-year Electronic Engineering student Josh Oldfield was named ‘Scholar of the Year’, the third time this title has been won by a student from Southampton’s Department of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS) at Southampton over the last five years.

The annual competition involves students from all the UK’s leading engineering departments and is sponsored by the UK Electronics Skills Foundation. Josh’s award recognized his commitment to the UK’s electronic industry and his achievements – both as a student in Electronics and Computer Science and as an intern at his sponsoring company, ARM. he runner-up for the title ‘Scholar of the Year’ was also a student in ECS – Dominic Maskell is in the third-year of his degree in Electronic Engineering, and is sponsored by Selex ES.

Five previous ECS students have been named as finalists for this prestigious title since it was instituted in 2011. In that year two ECS students were named as finalists, with the title won by Adam Malpass, with Tom Dell runner-up; in 2012 Samuel Hipkin was runner-up, and in 2013 the title was won by Ashley Robinson, who graduated from ECS in 2014. Josh appeared in last year’s final, the only student so far to have reached the finals twice.

ECS, in partnership with ARM, also won the title ‘University Research Group of the Year’ – sponsored by Thales for excellent liaison and partnership in electronic systems with industry. The ARM-ECS Research Centre was founded in 2008 following successful research collaboration over previous years between Professor Bashir Al-Hashimi's research group and ARM. Centre researchers work at ARM or at ECS with internships at ARM. It is co-directed by Professor Al-Hashimi and Dr David Flynn (ARM Fellow, Visiting Professor at ECS). The Centre focuses on leading-edge research on advanced design methods, architectures and their practical validations for energy-efficient and dependable single-core and multi-core processor systems.

The citation read: ‘This year’s winner has demonstrated a very strong portfolio in electronics design built on world-class research partnerships with companies. The Centre has proved to be an exemplar of a cross-industry electronics research centre, which has delivered important collaborative ventures, such as the £5.6M PRiME project.’

"It is a great honour to have received two awards from the UK’s microelectronics industry at this prestigious event," said Professor Bashir Al-Hashimi, Dean of the Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering at the University of Southampton. "We place a very high value on our links with industry, and our collaboration with ARM has been particularly successful, enabling research at the highest level, as well as the transfer of knowledge and practical applications. It has also led directly to the development of significant research projects, such as the PRiME programme."

In the last week ARM, the world’s leading semiconductor IP company, has also announced its continuing commitment to a partnership with the University with a further three years of funding to the ARM-ECS Research Centre.

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