We recently had the pleasure of continuing our commitment to the Nuffield Research Placement scheme by hosting two students this year to look into a scientific report on our commitment to net zero by 2030. The Nuffield Placement scheme is to give hands-on experience in research projects in which Year 12 students can contribute toward an organisation by providing an independent, supervised report relating to a multitude of academic areas such as science, technology, engineering or maths.
James and Adnaan came in over their summer break to compose the report. After introductions to the Chief Morale Officer, Murphy🐾, and the rest of the team to learn about the company, they set off to look into our carbon footprint for the past 5 years. Using the information gathered, they devised a prediction model that would be able to extrapolate our carbon footprint for the rest of this year and then fully predict the future emissions created by our business activity in the years to come.
The students studied the way in which we operate and suggested future business cases which would not impact business operations but yet reduce our carbon footprint. The emissions that we could not reduce they investigated the best way to offset, looking into sustainable forest planting, seagrass and other carbon capture schemes which they again put into business cases that meant they could be easily used and would slot into our plans for the future.
Their input into our business is much welcomed as it gives us an independent stance on the realism of our aim to be net zero by 2030 and their reports have given us a way to reduce our carbon alongside a sliding scale of reduction vs offsetting, something that will be vital in our plans for the next 8 years as we reach for our targets.
The students had the challenge to write scientific reports, which they would not have done in school but would be writing many of in their progression through higher education into university. Having the opportunity to learn how to write these before going to university next year is an invaluable lesson and something that I wish I knew before I started writing them almost 10 years ago.
The placement also introduced the year 12 students to the working office, having them in the office meant that they had the headstart with the concepts of meetings, virtually and in person which introduced them to the fast paced and ever changing hustle and bustle of the modern office. Working with the business ethos of ‘work is not a place but an activity’ they had the free roam to come into the office on what days they saw fit, introducing them to the new normal of hybrid working, something which I believe is going to help them not only when they move onto higher education next year but also when they finish their studies and take the next step into their working lives.
Although it is an independent report and poster that both James and Adnaan had to write, they were fully supported by our net zero team within RMS. Margaret, Dan and myself coached them along the way in many aspects, from interrogating data sets, understanding the future plans of growth in the business and guiding them through the complications of writing a scientific report and poster creation.
As part of the acknowledgements included in his final report, student James said:
“I must thank RMS and Nuffield for providing me with this excellent opportunity. I am really grateful to the project supervisors Olly Bolingbroke and Daniel O'Toole for their extraordinary support and advice.”
James receiving his certificate for his achievements
RMS Head of Business Intelligence