UKAEA Graduate Scheme 2023 – Central Engineering Department

Overview of Responsibilities

Department description

The Central Engineering Department (CED) has an extensive portfolio and track record leading projects for the organisation. These activities include the enhancement and maintenance of the two world-class fusion devices, supporting facilities on site as well as providing wider direct support to external clients proving fusion as a viable energy source for future generations. This includes key strategic UKAEA programmes strengthening its, and the UK’s, position to provide for the future fusion economy as the technology matures towards commercialisation.

Who are we looking for? 

We have an excellent opportunity for motivated and enthusiastic graduates to join our two-year graduate scheme, where you will spend 80% of your time developing both your general work-related skills and professional qualifications, with 20% of your working time dedicated to graduate training and development. UKAEA has a nurturing community that learns from each other. 

Within the 20% training and development, there is a core suite of activities designed to develop your professional and business skills. Elements of this programme are flexible and can be tailored to your personal development needs and to those of your specific job role.

What opportunities does the graduate scheme cover? 

  • The Structural Engineering team supports all projects across the site providing expertise in the design and qualification of the structural elements of our experimental plant. As a structural engineer, you will provide specialist solutions for structural issues relating to nuclear fusion and remote handling capabilities. These roles offer a variety of working experiences from embedded support with a design team or mission-critical support to active projects such as JET and MAST-U ensuring safety through structural assessments using Eurocodes. Working alongside experienced structural engineers at the UKAEA allows the development of technical expertise and understanding of challenges that future fusion power plants will face.


  • Process Engineers are accountable for originating and progressing designs for major fusion sub-systems, from concept through to detailed design on enhancement programs for UKAEA’s facilities as well as for future fusion devices. As part of the team, you will contribute to all engineering aspects relating to assigned systems/components including repair, replacement or upgrade activities. Also, you will ensure that designs are appropriately validated (by computation or experiment), and adhere to international fusion-specific design standards. Process engineers have an instrumental role in supporting all major projects across the organisation and help to gain unique knowledge and experience in the rapidly evolving fusion industry.


  • Graduate Mechanical Engineers will perform a variety of engineering tasks aimed at providing support to all mechanical-related projects within the Central Engineering Department and in collaboration with other areas of the organisation and external stakeholders. These activities can include system analysis, concept generation and selection, writing a functional specification, procurement, monitoring manufacturing standards to meet UKAEA’s standards, and planning work programs and projects. The role will enable the development of a balanced mix of technical, management and people skills and constitute a solid foundation for further career progress and development. 


Our scheme is accredited by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), the Institution of Engineering & Technology (IET) and the Institute of Physics (IoP) as a professional development scheme.

Starting at £29,000 + excellent benefits
Graduate Scheme Generic
Type of Employment

Additional Information

What is the recruitment process? 

All applications will be initially reviewed by our Early Careers Team and then passed on to our Technical Managers. If shortlisted, you will be contacted by a member of the recruiting team to arrange a short telephone interview. Successful applications will be invited to a more in depth virtual interview where you will have the opportunity to demonstrate your abilities and skills in a range of different situations which include a short presentation. You may be required to attend a final in person meet and greet session to support decision making around the role. 

What we offer 

  • A competitive salary of £29,000

  • A dedicated mentor who will help to develop your career and experience 

  • Encouragement and support to achieve your professional accreditation 

  • A culture committed to being fully inclusive, supported by a Being Inclusive Strategy and Inclusion Ambassadors 

  • An Employee Assistance Programme and trained Mental Health First Aiders, with a full calendar of health and wellbeing initiatives 

  • Dedicated Early Careers events and team building opportunities  

  • Being part of the Graduate and Early Careers community at UKAEA 

  • Flexible working options including family friendly policies  

  • 30.5 days annual leave increased with length of service (including privilege days and 3 days between Christmas and New Year) plus bank holidays

  • Outstanding defined benefit pension scheme

  • Annual corporate bonus scheme

We welcome applications from under-represented groups, particularly from individuals from black and other ethnic minority backgrounds, including nationality and citizenship, people with disabilities, (visible and hidden) and women. The Executive team with support from our EDI ‘Equality, Diversity and Inclusion’ (EDI) partner and Inclusion Ambassadors, is actively promoting EDI and taking steps to increase the diversity of our people through reinforcing best practice in recruitment and selection, and revaluating approaches where it is clear we can remove barriers to success. We are easily accessible by car and are a 10-minute walk from Culham Railway Station in Oxfordshire.

You can find more information specifically about the graduate scheme at  

Please be advised that this vacancy is due to close on 06/01/2023. .Please be advised that this vacancy may close earlier than stated if large or sufficient numbers of applications are received, so please apply early to avoid disappointment.

Please note all employees working at the UK Atomic Energy Authority will be required to complete an online Disclosure Certificate application as part of their clearance – The Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) checks will show the details of all current criminal convictions (convictions considered unspent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974) or will confirm that there are no such convictions

current opportunities

Browse some of our current job vacancies below.

Programme Manager

UKAEA Rotherham, Yorkshire

UKAEA Graduate Scheme 2023 - Materials and Technology

UKAEA Culham, Oxfordshire or Rotherham, Yorkshire

What can I expect from the application process at UKAEA?

Once you have submitted a formal application via our website, all CVs will be reviewed shortly after the closing date of the advert.

  • Submit online application

  • Phone interview

  • Face-to-face or virtual interview

  • Other assessments

Company Description

By 2050, the planet could be using twice as much electricity compared to today. Are you interested in contributing to shape the future of the world’s energy? If so, read on.

Fusion, the process that powers the sun and stars, is one of the most promising options for generating the cleaner, carbon-free energy that our world badly needs. UKAEA are at the forefront of realising energy from fusion, working with industry and research partners to deliver the ground-breaking developments that will underpin tomorrow's fusion power stations with the aim of bringing fusion electricity to the grid.

As we work towards our mission and goals, UKAEA has devised values that capture the spirit of how we work. These values include being: Innovative, Committed, Trusted and Collaborative.

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