‌Student Destinations

Many of our students are offered PhD positions following the MSc - in both Fusion Energy and other subject areas. Many go on to PhD studies in York, Oxford, Imperial, Edinburhgh, Durham, Liverpool, Portugal, among others. Other students go straight into industry, some as far afield as Japan!

Hamish Patten‌

After my Bachelors degree, I knew that I wanted to apply the skills and techniques I had learnt from studying Physics and Maths towards something positive. Nuclear fusion immediately stood out to me, especially as there have been decades of research dedicated towards producing a commercial reactor. I wanted to contribute towards this goal, and after my dear friend Google pointed out the MSc in York, I took the decision to move to up north. It was one of the best decisions of my life. So far I have not come across another course even remotely similar. Studying under many of the UK's top Fusion scientists, as well as eating lunch and chatting freely with them anytime in the YPI was exceptionally beneficial for my knowledge. The lectures were incredible, with each course designed to provide you with the most up-to-date fusion physics and engineering, including a particular emphasis on data analysis and computational modeling. It was always a dream of mine to move abroad and learn another language, and after the MSc I was accepted for a theoretical PhD at CRPP (EPFL) in Switzerland. I don't know what I would have done without the MSc, even from day one here I was able to sit in presentations and understand the millions of different terms and acronyms used in fusion research, it also helped me when talking to the engineers not to sound like a complete idiot about the resolution of diagnostics etc. My French is still currently terrible, and I'm sure that I am decreasing the reliability of the code that I am modifying, but I maintain my sanity with the illusion that I am contributing intelligent research towards nuclear fusion, and also with an office view of the Alps.

July Nguyen‌


"Prior to my arrival in York, I had frequently heard that York is a young and very active university and people there are very friendly and supportive. Upon arrival and after having spent a year for the MSc course in Fusion Energy at York Plasma Institute, I feel that I must say "Yes, it's absolutely the truth!". York Plasma Institute has great facilities, offers very high quality teaching and greatly interactive environment where MSc students can daily discuss with PhD students and the academic staff. Imagine every day, at any time, you can easily pop in any academic staff's room to ask questions and clear up any confusion. It's simply because they are very kind and supportive; and most of your studying activities will take place in a learning studio close by.

Fusion research is undoubtedly key to York's rapidly growing reputation. And I have really enjoyed my studies here... that helps me feel very confident with any challenges in any physics-related fields ahead."

David Blackman (Part-Time)‌

"I studied for the MSc in Fusion Energy part-time over two years in order to keep working whilst I completed it. During the MSc, I studied a wide variety of plasma physics and learned a lot about how to operate in a modern and vibrant research area like fusion. I gained a lot from the laboratory modules which focussed on computational analysis of results from various experiments including very recent research from experiments like MAST and JET. I also got the chance to work with researchers on the cutting edge of laser plasma physics by working on a project at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

I was able to choose from a number of MSc projects in differing locations as the York Plasma Institute (YPI) has links with a number of organisations including strong links with Culham Centre for Fusion Energy as well as Rutherford Appleton Laboratory. YPI itself has a wide variety of academic, computational and experimental resources available which made for quite a difficult choice! There are also growing links with industry through both the low temperature plasma group and biological applications so there was a good choice of careers post MSc.

I chose to carry on my studies in a PhD focussing on laser produced plasmas at YPI as I enjoyed my MSc so much.

The city of York is beautiful, as is the surrounding countryside. Within the city there are numerous places to visit as well as places to dine out for both the adventurous and budget conscious."

Jon Skipp

Jon Skipp, MSc student 2011/12

"I have really enjoyed the MSc - it is a challenging, but very rewarding course. I have found the quality of teaching very high, and I have received a huge amount of support from academic members of staff. I have also really enjoyed the camaraderie and atmosphere in the York Plasma Institute."