Posted 19 January 2015
“Having the chance to be part of a global company whilst at university is a rare thing and hopefully this will lead to a future career with them. I really enjoyed the interview process as it allowed me to improve my presentation skills and really emphasise why I wish to become an agricultural engineer."
Twenty-year-old Welshman, Hywel Philips has been chosen as the new Claas scholar at Harper Adams University.
The Claas Scholarship, awarded annually, offers one outstanding student both financial sponsorship and a work placement year at the company’s headquarters in Harsewinkel, Germany.
Hywel, a second year MEng Agricultural Engineering student from Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, said: “I am absolutely thrilled to have been awarded the Claas Scholarship, as it is something I have been aware of for a couple of years. It was a very competitive process and the fact that I live with two of the other candidates made it even more difficult!
“Having the chance to be part of a global company whilst at university is a rare thing and hopefully this will lead to a future career with them. I really enjoyed the interview process as it allowed me to improve my presentation skills and really emphasise why I wish to become an agricultural engineer. I would like to thank everyone from Claas who was involved in selecting me – I look forward to working with them.
“I will be working with Claas for 15 months and will start by spending three months with Claas UK in Suffolk, possibly working as a field technician. I will then spend 12 months working at the Claas headquarters in Harsewinkel, Germany. I am very excited about working there and getting a feel for a new culture and the language. I will be given the opportunity to work with some of the best agricultural engineers there are and working on concepts that are a few years down the line.
“I intend on getting the most out of my placement by fully committing myself in all areas that I am able to. I then hope to complete my degree at Harper Adams University and go on to work with Claas, working towards chartered status through the Institution of Agricultural Engineers, which I believe is an important asset to have.”
Away from his work and studies, Hywel enjoys watching rugby and would like to play the sport again. He also plays the guitar and collects models, but his biggest interest is in agricultural machines.
Hywel has also secured a Douglas Bomford Trust Scholarship this year. “It is excellent to be associated with the Douglas Bomford Trust as they provide the Harper Adams engineering department with tremendous support,” added Hywel, a former pupil of Ysgol Dewi Saint.
Fellow DBT scholar, Alison Skea, 22, from Forfar, Scotland, was a finalist for the Claas scholarship. Despite not being selected as a scholar, her excellent performance in the selection process resulted in Alison receiving a placement offer from Claas, which will involve six months at the company’s base in Le Mans, France, and six months at Harsewinkel. Both Hywel and Alison will spend summer 2015 learning about the company at its UK base before working overseas.
The Claas scholarship provides an award of £3,000 in the successful student’s second year of study, and sponsorship in subsequent years dependent on performance.