SSG Summer Studentships

From 2018 onwards, the SSG will be funding annual summer studentships of up to £1500, to support innovative research projects undertaken by students affiliated with UK universities or commercial organisations.

The proposed projects may involve any aspect of separation science, i.e. the science of separating, detecting and identifying individual components of complex mixtures, and should emphasise the use of separation techniques such as chromatography (e.g. GC, LC, SFC), capillary electrophoresis (CE), solid-phase extraction (SPE), ion-mobility etc. Projects may also involve the application of appropriate data analysis strategies, processing tools, and predictive modelling approaches to data obtained from the aforementioned separation techniques.


Application deadlines and criteria are announced between January and March each year. While the number of studentships may vary from year to year, applications must generally meet the following criteria:

  • The application must be submitted by the supervisor of the prospective student
  • The supervisor or student must be a member of the RSC
  • The supervisor should be in full-time employment at a UK university, or commercial organisation at which the project will be conducted. If the supervisor is a part-time employee, a collaborator who is a full-time employee should also be named on the application
  • Only one application per supervisor will be considered by the SSG committee each funding cycle
  • Successful applicants must use the funds to provide direct financial support to the student for the duration of the studentship (typically 6-8 weeks), e.g. as a stipend to cover living expenses and a wage, and solely for the purpose set out in the original application
  • Funds are not to be used for conference attendance, travel, or the continuation of extant projects
  • Successful applicants may recruit any student who is registered at a UK university for the proposed project. This includes UK and EU nationals, those with UK residence permits, and overseas students who hold a valid student visa for the entire period of the studentship. Additionally, the student may undertake the work wholly or in part within a commercial organisation
  • The student and supervisor must submit a report of up to 2500 words describing their results within 6 weeks of project completion. This report may be published on the SSG and RSC websites, and appear in newsletters and other media circulated by the SSG and related groups. The report must be produced within the time frame allotted by the committee; delayed receipt of this report will negatively affect any future funding applications submitted to the committee by the student and/or supervisor
  • On receipt of the report, delayed publication (e.g. so as not to prejudice journal submission) can be negotiated, but the report must be presented within the time frame outlined by the SSG
  • The financial support provided by the RSC SSG must be acknowledged in all presentations/publications resulting from the research conducted during the studentship

Applicants are usually informed of the committee’s decision by mid-April. 

Past studentships

The Separation Science Group awarded two summer studentships in 2018, to Angela Elliot Smith, from the University of Reading (Supervisor: Dr Christianne Wicking at British Petroleum) and to Stuart Ramage, from Robert Gordon University of Aberdeen (Supervisor: Dr Bruce Petrie)
The Separation Science Group awarded two summer studentships in 2012, to Jasmine Bond, from the University of Lincoln (Supervisor: Dr Ruth Croxton) and Robert Dobs, from the University of Durham (Supervisor: Dr John Sanderson)
The Separation Science Group summer studentship was awarded to Daniel Stark from the University of Northumbria, for a project on ‘Analysis of Media and Pigments in Modern Oil Paints by GC-MS and pyrolysis GC-MS’