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Professor Steve Wilkinson, Head of Chemical Engineering, University of Chester; Tim Smith, Projects Engineer, Ultromex; Dion Noorani; Emily Ratcliffe, Analytical Chemist, Ultromex; Chris Evans, Analytical Chemist, Ultromex.

Dion Noorani, 22, who is from Liverpool, graduated from the University of Chester with a BEng degree in Chemical Engineering. Like other students on the science and engineering courses at Chester, Dion benefitted from the usual four to five week placements at the end of his first and second years of study. This then led to an extra placement with metal industry suppliers, Ultromex, and finally a full-time graduate job – a great experience of the University’s “Work Experience Ladder”.

Dion said: “Chemical Engineering is a challenging subject, but I’m so happy that I’ve now graduated into a top job with a world class company. I always felt totally supported by the teaching staff at Chester who took a real interest in helping me in my career. The placements programme is incredible. My last placement with Ultromex has now turned into my dream job, with the opportunity to work in Europe on the design of a brand new process!”

Both the BEng and MEng degrees at Chester have been accredited by the IChemE and are rigorous courses that are already well respected by employees. Small class sizes, combined with a culture of strong support, help students succeed. “When Dion initially struggled with two of our more theoretical modules I quickly realised that some practical work experience would help his confidence,” explains Professor Steve Wilkinson, Head of the University’s Department of Chemical Engineering. “We managed to line up an extra placement with Ultromex, which is one of the many companies we work with.”

Chris Evans from Ultromex takes up the story: “Dion did a great job and you could see his confidence growing with each day in the lab. What started as a voluntary placement quickly became a paid one as Dion soon became an asset to the company. It gave him a strong purpose to be working and earning while he was studying to repeat his exams at the end of the year.”

Dion credits both the University and the support from his family for encouraging him to keep going and complete his studies – and for working with him to find a solution (which, in Dion’s case, was the extra work based learning, which boosted his confidence). Dion’s father, Bahram Noorani, is just as delighted at the turn of events. “As a family, we were under no doubt that Dion possessed more than enough theoretical knowledge for him to excel at the modules but, with a lack of confidence, he was unable to perform at his highest level. With the support provided by the teaching staff at Chester and the placement with Ultromex, he was able to demonstrate his capabilities in practice and exams. We are very proud of what our son has achieved.”

Information about studying Chemical Engineering at the University of Chester can be found at: https://www1.chester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/chemical-engineering

Further information about Ultromex can be found at: https://www.ultromex.com/

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