We have vacancies for a range of exciting projects to be run during the spring semester 2023.
We are running 4 projects this spring and also have a new part-time delivery engineer role to advertise.
Details of the Posts
The 4 projects will run across the spring semester, with the standard project timing being from early February to late April. Check the individual project descriptions for details.
All posts are part-time, requiring 7 hours per week across the project period (although holiday weeks can be taken as needed). Additional hours can be worked during the vacation period.
The base pay rate is £11.06 per hour, with an additional holiday payment on top of this. Payment is made monthly in arrears.
It is expected that the projects will be run on campus but with some scope for flexible and hybrid working. Each team will set their own core hours when all team members must be present and available for work (for example, for a weekly team meeting). Additional hours can then be worked at a time and place convenient to each team member.
The posts are open to any undergraduate student studying at the University of Manchester, including students who will graduate this summer. We especially welcome applications from groups of people who are under-represented in the software engineering profession. We aim to recruit diverse teams for Imago, containing a mixture of experienced team members and inexperienced but talented junior team members. Working for Imago is a great way to bootstrap your personal portfolio and add some real development experience to your CV.
Video Games for Sustainable Development
We have vacancies for 6 part-time game developers to work with academics on a pilot project to explore whether video games can be used as a medium to engage the public with sustainability research being carried out by academics at the University of Manchester. To test this idea, we will work with academics from a range of disciplines to build a video game prototype that showcases the results of their research. We are focussing on research in environmental sustainability and health for this first pilot project.
Applicants should have strong coding and design abilities, with a keen interest in video game design. While experience with the Unreal game engine will be an advantage, the positions are also open to students with little or no current experience, but with the talent and drive to gain the skills they need rapidly throughout the project.
This project is being run in conjunction with Keep.It.Human, a UoM based social enterprise which aims to convert actions in digital worlds into social actions for good in the real world. An example of a game built by Keep.It.Human, with support from Imago students, can be seen at: Mangrove.world.
We have vacancies for 4 developers to build software for MelonTech, a University of Manchester research start-up that is developing tools to help patients with Congenital Hyperinsulinism (CHI). One treatment approach is to use Continuous Glucose Monitoring, in which an in-body monitor reports glucose levels to a central server. The research that MelonTech is based on uses new approaches to analysing and visualising the glucose results, to help patients better manage their condition by linking lifestyle choices to incidents of high blood glucose.
The project will involve converting the research prototypes created by the academic team into a scalable and secure web service that is sufficiently robust to support wider scale medical trials with the technology. Since the system must handle medical data, the project will also involve putting in place appropriate data security and data protection mechanisms, to ensure that personal and sensitive data is safeguarded.
The project will give experience in building a web service for handling medical data, as well as interacting with clients to support the early stage development of a research-based startup. Applicants should have excellent programming and system design skills, and an interest in learning how to write code that meets regulatory and ethical guidelines, as well as being thoroughly tested.
Flexible Learning Tools for Online Learners
We have vacancies for 4 developers to work with academics on the Higher Education Short Course Trial project, funded by the Office for Students. The project will feed into the UK Government’s Lifelong Loan Entitlement strategy.
A previous project has created a web-based interface to the flexible learning materials, that enables learners to track their progress through the course, to set short term learning goals and to package learning materials on-the-fly for their use.
This system will shortly be used with learners on the course. This project aims to develop additional features as well as fixing bugs and collecting feedback from users on the use of the system, while the system is in use.
A mixture of front-end (UI/UX) and backend development skills will be needed for this project. Applications should also demonstrate a commitment to delivering value for learners, listening to their opinions and making changes to increase the usefulness of the system based on their feedback.
Open Source Workshops for Research Entrepreneurs
We have funds to employ 2 students to work with us to develop a series of workshops for researchers and academics at the University of Manchester on business models for software-based start-ups using open source.
Publication requirements for research often require any software written during the research to be published as open source during or shortly after the end of the research project. Until recently, this was seen as blocker to commercial exploitation of the research results, but with new business models based on open source emerging, this need no longer be the case.
The posts will involve researching different business models based on open source software and creating a catalogue of models that can be used with academic research. We will then create “how-to” guides for the most promising models, that will help academics and researchers who want to set up a business based on their research, using a specific model, to get started quickly.
The posts will also involve designing one or more workshops that can be delivered to groups of UoM staff working with the University of Manchester Innovation Factory to help them understand what models are available, which ones might fit their own start up idea, and what would be involved.
This project will have some technical content (specifically relating to open sourcing), but also involves creation of clear and accessible written materials and high quality presentation materials. Applicants should have strong communication and research skills, as well as excellent technical skills and a willingness to adapt the work done to meet the client’s goals.
The project will provide experience of working with technology transfer for research-based software businesses, as well as experience in configuring software for a range of open source business and revenue models.
Part-Time Delivery Engineer
This new part-time role is aimed at keeping the systems Imago creates for its clients running effectively and at helping Imago to develop a suitable technical and skills infrastructure for cost-effective software delivery.
Since we mainly deploy software for Imago clients through either Docker or cloud-based hosting services (like Netlify and Heroku), the role will involve gaining skills in managing systems deployed on these platforms, and in the tools needed to keep the costs of maintaining them low.
As well as responding to client/user reported problems with systems. the role will involve helping Imago to select, acquire and configure a suite of DevOps tools to allow us to provide professional quality technical support and service level agreements to those clients who sign up for our extended maintenance contracts.
A final element of the role is to act as a DevOps advocate for Imago. The delivery engineer will work with our teams to help them quickly acquire the skills they need to create and deploy high quality, maintainable systems.
This post would suit any student who has an interest in modern DevOps technologies, and who is willing to take on the challenge of maintaining a variety of systems on different platforms created by other people. A mix of strong technical skills with good communication skills will be needed by the successful applicant.
This is a 6 month post, to 31st July 2023, and involves an average of 2 hours work per week, though actual working hours will vary depending on client needs and the availability of the student taking on the role.
How to Apply
The deadline for applications is: 5.00pm GMT on Saturday, 11th February 2023.
To apply, log in to your University of Manchester Office 365 account and complete the following form:
by the deadline.
You will need to use your University of Manchester Office 365 account to submit a response to the form. Applicants who have not worked for Imago before will be asked to submit an up-to-date CV, showcasing your skills and experience.
You can also optionally upload a covering letter in which you can tell us more about why you think you are a suitable applicant for the projects you have applied for.
Your CV or covering letter can optionally provide links to your personal portfolio of projects, to showcase your abilities.
Appointments to the posts will primarily be made on the basis of an interview, but in some cases we may make an offer based on the CV and covering letter alone.
Employment with Imago is subject to confirmation of the applicant’s right to work in the UK, and a willingness to comply with University staff policies on ownership of IP and non-disclosure of confidential information.
Note: some of the posts we are advertising here are still going through the process of approval by the University and so may be subject to changes before the posts can begin.
More information about Imago can be found at imago.cs.manchester.ac.uk.