Scientist takes his research to Parliament for national competition

Jon Millican will be presenting his work in Parliament as part of STEM for BRITAIN - a poster compet

Jon Millican will be presenting his work in Parliament as part of STEM for BRITAIN - a poster competition in the House of Commons. Picture: James Mulkeen. - Credit: Archant

A doctoral research student from Great Yarmouth will be travelling to London to present his chemistry research to a range of politicians and a panel of expert judges.

Jon Millican, 27, who is currently studying at Durham University, will be presenting his work in Parliament on Monday, March 12, as part of STEM for BRITAIN - a poster competition in the House of Commons for early stage or early career researchers

Mr Millican’s poster – on the development of smart coatings, inspired by the way mussels stick to rocks – will be judged against dozens of other scientists’ research in the only national competition of its kind.

The former Flegg High School student was shortlisted from hundreds of applicants to appear in Parliament.

Mr Millican said: “I am excited to have the opportunity to engage, alongside other young scientists, with MPs. STEM communication is an essential skill for future interactions between researchers and policy makers.”

Stephen Metcalfe MP, chairman of the parliamentary and scientific committee, said: “This annual competition is an important date in the parliamentary calendar because it gives MPs an opportunity to speak to a wide range of the country’s best young researchers.

“These early career engineers, mathematicians and scientists are the architects of our future and STEM for BRITAIN is politicians’ best opportunity to meet them and understand their work.”

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Mr Millican’s research has been entered into the chemistry session of the competition, which will end in a gold, silver and bronze prize-giving ceremony.

The gold medalist receives £2,000, while silver and bronze receive £1,250 and £750, respectively. The competition is judged by leading academics and there will also be an overall winner from the four sessions held who will receive the Westminster Wharton Medal.

The parliamentary and scientific committee runs the event in collaboration with the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society of Chemistry, the Institute of Physics, the Royal Society of Biology, The Physiological Society and the Council for the Mathematical Sciences. Financial support comes from the Clay Mathematics Institute, Research Councils UK, Warwick Manufacturing Group, Society of Chemical Industry, Institute of Biomedical Science and the Heilbronn Institute for Mathematical Research and the Nutrition Society.