03:31PM, Monday 22 June 2020
A former Maidenhead student has made the finals of a national engineering competition.
Katie Walker, 19, who went to Newlands Girls’ School and has accepted a place at Oxford University to study physics, has spent this year on placement with aerospace engineering company Leonardo in Edinburgh.
She has reached the finals for the Engineering Development Trust’s Year in Industry ‘Contribution to the Business’ (CTTB) award for her work at Leonardo this year.
During her placement, Katie has designed a tool which can design antenna and measure how they adapt to different environments. The tool is already being used by Leonardo, which employs more than 7,000 staff across the UK.
The CTTB awards celebrate school leavers and undergraduates during their year in industry, and this year was the first that the semi-finals were held virtually.
Katie, who is living in Edinburgh, rose to the challenge though and is now looking forward to the grand final on Wednesday, June 24.
She said: “I’ve spent the past year developing antenna technology and when I had to start working from home due to the pandemic I was speaking to my manager every few days on Zoom.
“I soon realised that you need to heighten your concentration levels and up your energy when you’re relaying ideas remotely, which helped me when I had to deliver my presentation to the judges.”
Speaking about Katie’s selection for the awards, her manager James Pearce said: “After learning about a challenging coding problem using complex 3D geometry, Katie came up with an ingenious solution within minutes.
“She has become an integral member of our small development team and will be greatly missed when she begins her studies at Oxford University.”
This is also not the first time Katie has featured in the Advertiser. In August 2019 she featured in the Tiser’s A-level results day coverage after she received two As and an A*.