Early in September, Cohort one went to the Biomedical Imaging CDT Summer School, hosted at Oxford University. The summer school was a great opportunity to meet all the students from the other biomedical Imaging CDTs from around the country, with students visiting from CDTs at Oxford & Nottingham; UCL; and Edinburgh & Strathclyde. The summer school took place at St John’s College in Oxford where we spent three days together: attending talks and preparing a scientific mock-grant.
During the first day of the summer school each student had the chance to present their own research, with a poster or an oral presentation – and it was interesting to hear what other PhD Students are up to in our field at CDTs. Then the grant workshop official started!
A few months before the summer school all the students were divided in groups in order to discuss a common idea for the grant. Since each group was composed by students from different universities and cities, emails, Skype, sharing documents and chats were the only way to communicate which made the work more challenging, but also realistic.
After an initial introduction with some general guidelines on the afternoon of the first day of the summer school, we started to work with our group. We only had one day to complete the writing and to prepare a presentation, so it was necessary to divide the workload amongst the group members. It was a really great exercise!
On the second day of the summer school, the grants were presented to all the other students and evaluated by a “mock”-committee. Only one group was nominated winner but all the teams had done a really good job. To conclude the intense second day, a wonderful dinner was prepared for us in the fascinating main dining hall at St. John’s college.
The third and final day of the summer school was organised directly by the students. In the morning, speakers from industry were invited to present their own stories and experiences. It was interesting to hear success stories of laboratory products being brought into the market. In the afternoon a fun activity was organized for us and for a few hours we became "scientific actors”.
The summer school was a really great opportunity to meet other early career researchers in our field and to hear interesting stories from industrial speakers, whilst the grant workshop was a really different and rewarding challenge, and overall the event was really useful and enjoyable break from the lab.