RUG Mechanical Engineering Master's track students 'flir' with ICD during Matchmaking event

News | 19 March 2021

Students from the University of Groningen with a master's degree in Mechanical Engineering present themselves to the high-tech companies of the Innovatiecluster Drachten (ICD) and orientate themselves on suitable Design & Research graduation projects.

Bind and Buoys

The second batch of this new program is now preparing for their real graduation year. The ICD offers all these students a suitable opportunity to fill this in properly.

In the introduction of ICD program manager Joost Krebbekx it is explained what ICD companies can offer in this area through collaboration, sharing knowledge and making use of the Shared Facility Center in Drachten (with high-tech research equipment).

After a word of welcome from Professor Bayu Jayawardhana, 17 students introduce themselves in a short pitch. “It's not a beauty contest, there's a nice offer for everyone,” Krebbekx says beforehand, but everyone has professionally prepared the accompanying slides with information. Congratulations to everyone!

Graduating from a high-tech company

After the first matchmaking round, the companies present from the ICD introduce themselves, including Astron, Quadient, Philips Drachten, photonis, resato, Stork, YP Your partners and BD. They give a presentation about the possibilities within their company. After which the students can express their preference for the company where they want to graduate.

All companies have suitable high-tech assignments for which the students can apply. An assignment can consist of automation with a cobot, inspecting and (lifelong) testing of products, automating test equipment or producing new products. For example, Philips Drachten gives the example of a pacifier for babies. “The development of such a teat should not be underestimated,” says Daniel Dirksz. “Especially with a product for babies, attention must be paid to the many safety protocols.”

There is also sufficient challenge for the students in the field of Digital Vision for medical, physics or spatial research. But also practical matters such as efficiently organizing the workspace and, for example, building equipment for this as compact as possible.

Student of the first batch of the Design & Research study at the BACK, Pieter Wiersinga talks about his graduation project at Stork Turbo Blading BV. He devised a design for a new belt change system for the grinding and polishing machines. In his presentation he lets the students know how he has tackled this. 

One student would like to know how you start now, “is it difficult to put your project into practice based on the theory you have learned?” Pieter indicates that the tools and skills you learn during the training are easy to apply in practice.

As a tip, he gave 'find a project that suits you and that you like and keep in touch with your supervisor or study advisor and adjust your planning when necessary'.

Make a choice

dr. Marzia Nuzzolo of the Faculty of Science and Engineering at the University of Groningen will collect the preferences of the students, so that the connection with the companies within the Innovation Cluster can be started.

The students react enthusiastically, some of them linger in the online environment for a while afterwards to be able to ask additional questions. There is so much choice and just as many beautiful high-tech companies that they have heard of today and that have aroused their interest, that it is still quite difficult to make a choice with which company to do their graduation assignment. It is an 'eye-opener' that the Innovation Cluster can also offer them a great career in the Northern Netherlands for the future, especially because of the Bind and Buoys principle that the cluster promotes.