The Digital Academy pays selected students £3,000-a-year from the second year of university as well as up to 12-weeks paid summer placement throughout the duration of their studies within a Siemens business. At the end of their degree they will be given the chance to join Siemens’ Graduate Scheme.

The pioneering programme is a partnership between Siemens, the University of Sheffield and Newcastle University. It aims to offer undergraduates a practical, collaborative space to explore Industry 4.0 technologies and put what they learn at university into real world use.

Six trailblazing students from EEE (electrical and electronic engineering) and computer science departments have been selected to pilot the programme this summer.

Brian Holliday, Siemens Digital Industries managing director, said: “The Digital Academy is another ground-breaking example of how Siemens and our higher education partners are working together to encourage young people to pursue careers in engineering and technology.

“This programme gives undergraduates applied and up-to-date experience to bolster their academic learning. By strengthening links between business and our world-leading universities, we can inspire and nurture talent to support the UK’s leading role in the Fourth Industrial Revolution."

More Skills news:

The first group of undergraduates were selected from the inaugural Sir William Siemens Challenge, a two-day hackathon-style event held at the University of Sheffield which involved 84 promising engineering students from partner universities.

Professor Mike Hounslow, vice-president and head of the faculty of Engineering at the University of Sheffield, said: “We are focused on bridging the Industry 4.0 skills gap by equipping students with the skills for the new digital economy.

"Following a longstanding strategic partnership with Siemens, the University of Sheffield is delighted to be collaborating on the Digital Academy.

"Our students will benefit immensely from working with such a pioneering and transformational technology company.”