Research and Development - Refreshment

Do you have a passion for science and research?  Are you looking for a hands-on alternative to university?  Join us to kick-start your career with a global innovative company whilst obtaining a fully-funded BSc in either Food Science/Chemistry or Chemical Science!

What is it?

The Research and Development (R&D) Refreshment apprenticeship at Unilever is 5 year programme in which to begin your career in a science and research lab environment.  Our apprenticeship scheme offers you the opportunity to study for a BSc in a related subject (Food Science/Chemistry or Chemical Science). The scheme is designed to last five years dependent on the length of the programme of study.  Apprentices are given one day per week during term-time to study; this can be used for a ‘day release’ method of study or as dedicated study for a distance learning programme. 

Why choose Colworth? 

Join us at Unilever’s R&D site at Colworth to build and contribute to a number of brands including Lipton, PG Tips, Flora, Magnum, Cornetto and Dove. Colworth was responsible for breakthrough technologies including pyramid tea bags, and a range of healthier great tasting and exciting ice cream, as well as more recently the HeartAge tool that supports lifestyle behaviour change. Over 600 scientists, technologists, legal professionals and support staff work at Colworth on a diverse range of activities. It is home to the Global Design Centre for Beverages and Ice Cream, Regional Deploy Centre for Beverages, Unilever Safety and Environmental Assurance Centre, Discover and Critical Functions Capabilities such as Information and Technology for R&D, boasting one of the largest ice cream pilot plans and most northerly tea plantation.

What do we look for?

We look for apprentices who...

  • Have at least 5 GCSEs or equivalent at grade C or above that include English Language and Maths.
  • Have at least (or be predicted) 2 A-levels in science or maths at grade B or above (or equivalent).
  • Can work as part of a team, so excellent communication skills and teamwork are essential, as are an ability to organise a varied workload.
  • Contribute their ideas and think for themselves.
  • Are up for a challenge, can use their own initiative to solve problems, and can demonstrate good attention to detail.
  • Have confidence and a passion for science and need to demonstrate commitment and initiative to manage the pressures that studying whilst working can bring.
  • Are prepared to take on work outside of their comfort zone and have a passion to succeed.

How can I apply?

To apply, simply follow the link to complete an online application form - this is where you’ll tell us about your education, previous experience, interests, activities and any positions of responsibility. From there, the next steps may be online assessments, a telephone interview and an assessment centre or face-to-face interview.


Job type: 
Sponsored degree
Location of vacancy: 
Number of vacancies: 
Length of programme: 
5+ years
Resulting qualification: 
Degree qualification
Closing date: 
Start date: 
Entry requirements: 
A levels (or equivalent)
Subjects required: 
Minimum of 5 GCSE’s at grade C or above including English Language and Maths. Minimum 2 A-levels in science or maths at grade B or above (or equivalent).
Business, Science

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