Science Technician of the Year Winner Announced

The Gratnells Science Technician of the Year award 2017/18 has been awarded to Dawn Clinton from Lady Manners School in Bakewell

Now in its tenth year, the competition is open to Science Technicians in secondary schools, colleges and academies across the world.  Entrants much be 18 years old, with at least two years’ experience in full or part time employment. The judging panel, consisting of esteemed industry professionals, look for evidence of individuals who go ‘above and beyond’ in their daily work - Science Technicians who embrace their work, enjoy the challenges and look to offer continuous improvement in the services they deliver.

A Science Technician for over a decade, Dawn is now Chief Technician at Lady Manners School and is the perfect role model for anyone aspiring to become a Technician. She fell into the role when her children were small but immediately knew it was the job for her. From being very nervous working with pupils initially, she has grown into a confident, enthusiastic and well-versed Technician who loves working in the classroom and takes great joy in knowing her contribution makes a difference.

Her role these days is very varied, including giving practical advice to student teachers and assisting the Learning Support department, with children who have special educational needs and running various projects.  Dawn has run a Technician Network for 18 local schools for the past 3 years, helping other Technicians and allowing them to access free CPD training and sharing resources and equipment. She also arranges speakers and workshops from popular suppliers. In 2017 she trained to become an associate facilitator for the STEM Learning Centre and through this runs courses for Technicians in her local area.

Dawn has recently created a network for Derby Science Technicians, where she hosts meetings and eventually plans to empower them to host their own network meetings.  “I feel that hosting the network has made me more confident when delivering material for internal CPD sessions with Technicians and Teachers as well as when demonstrating equipment for pupils”. She has also been developing STEM clubs within the Science department, the concept being to allow the engaged pupils to do more science in a supportive atmosphere, giving them problems to solve with minimal help. The club is for Y7 – 9 and attendance is excellent, with pupils attending week after week, never missing a session. Dawn also arranges STEM Ambassadors and guests from industry to run sessions through the year.

To compliment the STEM clubs, Dawn is hoping to run a regular family STEM club, with pupils applying to be members and entering a team of family members for 2 or 3 competitions during the year. She also finds science events that will ehance club members’ learning, organising and accompanying the trips herself.

“Her enthusiasm is boundless”, said Mr Fred Kornas from Lady Manner School. “During the seven years Dawn has worked for us, she gives 100% in all she takes on. Her day-to-day organisation and communication skills are exceptional and she is totally commited to ensuring that the students understand and enjoy every aspect of science and the teachers’ job is made much easier by her spotless lesson preparation.”

Dawn was presented with the award by Gratnells Managing Director and Chairman, Murray Hudson, at a ceremony held at the National STEM Learning Centre on York University Campus, receiving £2,000 worth of vouchers for her school and a personal cheque. Next year she will be invited to join the judging panel for the 2018/19 awards and will become a member of the newly formed STOTY Alumni Association.


Congratulations to all this years winners and the runners up:                             

UK Winner – Dawn Clinton

Chief Technician - Lady Manners School – Bakewell


Runner-Up – Tracey Black

Senior Science Technician – St Aldhelm’s Academy, Poole, Dorset


Third Place – Lorraine Collins

Principal Science Technician – Highcliffe School, Christchurch, Dorset



Murray Hudson commented “It was a real privilege to acknowledge the dedication and commitment our STOTY winners have shown and thanks to our prize sponsors TimStar, SLS Select Education and SciChem, we hope the schools will benefit too.”


Entries for STOTY 2018/19 are now open. If you are a Science Technician or know someone who could enter then visit our Competition page here

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