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Exeter students chosen to work on new nuclear power plant project (Photo credit Richard Baker)

Exeter students chosen to work on new nuclear power plant project

University of Exeter students have been chosen to work as part of the team building Britain’s newest nuclear power plant.

Adrianna Seviour and Tom Papke will be playing a part in the construction of Hinkley Point C in Somerset, acting alongside legal experts to ensure the smooth-running of the project.

The involvement of students is possible thanks to a new four-year LLB Programme at the University of Exeter which allows law students to also undertake a year-long work placement.

Both Adrianna and Tom, who are currently second year students, will work with lawyers to provide advice and support, answer legal queries and help manage contracts. They will attend board meetings, conduct research and help develop training courses.

Both will be mainly based at EDF’s offices in Bristol, but will also spend some time on the new nuclear plant, which is near Bridgewater. They had to apply for their position in the Nuclear New Build Legal Team and go through a rigorous shortlisting and interview process. Students who apply for placements are supported through the application process by University of Exeter Law School staff and College Employability team.

Adrianna, 20, who is from near Bath, said: “I feel very privileged to not only be able to undertake this placement with such a well-respected company as EDF, but to also be able to contribute to the intricate legacy of the largest construction project in Europe. I am extremely looking forward to immersing myself in the varied work and embracing all the learning opportunities on offer. I am confident that the experience will ripen both my legal knowledge and skill, which will be beneficial for my final year of study in Exeter. I would like to thank the University for offering this fantastic and unique programme, as experience is invaluable in the current climate and I feel this will not only benefit my employability for my future career but also my commercial awareness and personal development.”

Tom said: “Law students rarely have an opportunity to gain long term experience during their degree as the common methods are through vacation schemes or mini-pupillages. Therefore, to work with the EDF on such an enormous project like Hinckley Point C, the largest construction project in Europe and the first nuclear power plant in the UK in a generation, was an unmissable opportunity.

“To gain first-hand, real world experience in a professional environment in construction law will not only give me a strong foundation for applying to training contracts in the future but also help to improve my university work come 4th year. I am thoroughly looking forward to the experience and the challenges it will hold.” 

Richard Edwards, Head of the University of Exeter Law School, said: “Having a year in industry will help our law students enhance their legal studies with invaluable practical experience: Not only will they be able to put their academic learning into practice, they will also gain valuable work experience and enhance their employability. Tom and Adrianna went through a highly competitive recruitment process so we’d like to congratulate them on securing this terrific opportunity with EDF.”

EDF solicitor Ellie Greatholder, said: “We are really pleased to be working with the University of Exeter and being able to offer two undergraduate law students the opportunity to spend a year embedded within our busy legal team and to gain a great experience of working on such a major project.  We were delighted with the level of interest from students, their knowledge of the project and enthusiasm to be a part of it, and we are looking forward to welcoming the first two students later this year.”

Date: 10 May 2018

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