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Technician Development

Tony Dennis

Current role: Technical Officer in Materials at the Department of Engineering

First role at the University: Laboratory Technician, Bulk Superconductivity Group, grade 5

After two years at the University:

  • took on increasing levels of responsibility and knowledge, including the ability to build and run specialist equipment
  • organised the move of the group's laboratory to its new site in Trumpington Street, planning the layout of the new lab and overseeing the transfer of all of the equipment.

Tony found the work that he was doing incredibly interesting and he believes that this had a huge impact on his positive attitude, his willingness to take on new things and his drive to use his own initiative.  

After five years at the University:

  • promoted to a grade 6 role and became a Local Safety Officer.

Tony became more involved in research and had the opportunity to travel to Saudi Arabia to support the Saudi government’s research programme CAMM.

After eight years at the University:

  • promoted to current role of Technical Officer, a grade 7 position  
  • runs three small research facilities (SRFs)
  • one of Engineering’s experts on SRFs, accurately costing equipment use
  • heavily involved in research and reporting research results.

Tony attends conferences and interfaces with other research groups across the world, establishing collaborative links with organisations such as the Boeing Corporation and Siemens.  In the last year, he has joined another academic group, the Materials Group, and splits his time between Materials and Bulk Superconductivity.  He now has responsibility for some very specialist pieces of equipment including the wide bore magnet and and μCT scanner .

Personal and professional development:

Tony drives his own personal and professional development, for example when he gained line management responsibility for a technician and an apprentice, he completed the Level 3 Award (ILM) in Leadership and Management, run by Personal and Professional Development, as well as the IOSH managing safely course.  Much of his technical expertise is self-taught as he has an enquiring mind and a thirst for knowledge.

Tony continues to be committed to his role, passionate about what he does and is constantly looking for new challenges.   He is a champion for the role that technicians play across the University and believes that the continuity that technicians bring to a department is vital to its success.