Belfast Software Engineer Lauren Burns named IET Apprentice of the Year


The 23-year-old recently graduated from her final year as part of the Kainos Earn as you Learn apprenticeship program.

She is currently working on large-scale government projects designed to improve the lives of millions of people living across the UK.

Lauren has been an active member of the tech community in Northern Ireland for the past five years and has implemented several educational programs to achieve her goal of inspiring young people to enter the tech industry. In 2020, she won the Women Who Code Global Hackathon with a machine learning solution that predicts the likelihood of a patient admitted to hospital with Covid-19 requiring intensive care admission. This system can help hospitals manage the supplies needed to save critically ill patients.

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Lauren Burns

Lauren recently co-founded Path Health App: a company founded to bridge the gender gap and help women with chronic pain get the diagnosis they deserve.

She said: “I am absolutely speechless to have won such a wonderful award, especially when there are so many apprentices doing amazing things across the UK. I will always consider my time in the Kainos EAYL Learning Program to be one of the most enjoyable and rewarding times of my life, and this award really ties all of those experiences together.

“For anyone reading this and considering the road less traveled, choosing an apprenticeship rather than a full-time college course has given me so many opportunities, invaluable lessons, and the necessary confidence (here’s the cheese) to pursue dreams I never thought were imaginable.

“I would like to say a big thank you to the IET and everyone who has supported me over the past five years. I couldn’t have done it without all of you.

The IET Achievement Awards exist to recognize individuals around the world who have made outstanding contributions to the advancement of engineering, technology, and science in any industry. This can be done through research and development in their respective technical field or through the management of a company.

EIT President Air Marshal Sir Julian Young added: “This is a fantastic achievement for Lauren which has had a huge impact early on in her career. It is particularly inspiring that in addition to her learning, she supports other young people to encourage greater uptake of STEM roles.

“The level of entries this year made judging extremely difficult. All of the IET Apprentice Award finalists demonstrated skills and knowledge throughout their work that went well beyond their roles. They have taken on challenging tasks and, through innovation and determination to succeed, have brought real benefits to their businesses. I wish everyone the best of luck for a long and rewarding engineering career.

The Apprentice and Technician Awards are part of the IET Excellence Awards and Fellowship program, which this year provided £ 1million in awards, prizes and scholarships to celebrate excellence and research in the sector and encourage the next generation of engineers and technicians.


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