Oliver Sanders, who graduated from Durham University with a first class honours degree in MEng H100 – Civil Engineering, was presented with the ICE Student Prize, which is awarded at a national level to the best civil engineering student at universities running courses, which the institution accredits.
Over the course of his four year degree, Oliver achieved consistent first class marks in his exams and coursework, including his third year individual project, which received the second highest mark in his graduating class.
His final year project, titled: 'Cohesive cracking using the Cracking Particles Method', was also awarded one of the highest marks in Oliver's year.
Oliver is now looking forward to starting his engineering career at Newcastle-based Arup, after securing a position at the company from September.
Oliver said: "It is a great honour to receive such a prestigious award, and I am grateful to the ICE and my tutors for their support throughout my course. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Durham and am extremely proud to have been awarded a first class honours degree, with the ICE Student Prize being the icing on the cake.
"I have put a lot of hard work into my studies over the last four years and I am now looking forward to starting my engineering career, building on my enjoyable experiences at Durham University."
Mark Simpson, graduated with a first class honours degree in BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering at Teesside University, was also presented with the ICE Student Prize.
Mark achieved an overall mark of 77%, having consistently being awarded 70% or greater throughout his four year, part time course. This included a 90% grade in his Geotechnical Engineering final year module, as well as 80% in Structural Engineering and Materials – another of Mark's final year modules.
Mark said: "This award success has come as a very pleasant surprise and one that I am extremely proud of. I have worked hard over the last four years, as I have balanced my studies with employment and other commitments, and I am delighted to have graduated with a first class honours degree.
"I would like to thank my tutors and the Institution for their support over the years, which has helped me progress to where I am today. I am now looking forward to building on these successes and forging a highly successful career in the industry."
ICE Regional Director Penny Marshall said: "Oliver and Mark have performed exceptionally well over the course of their degrees, and their ICE Student Prize is fully deserved. The award is presented to the top performing student, who demonstrates drive and determination to succeed in the industry, and it is keenly contested each year.
"Both graduates are a credit to the profession and have bright futures ahead of them within civil engineering. I would like to wish them both all the very best."