Director Russell Richardson recently spent a thoroughly enjoyable day leading sessions at the 2017 GRADnet Summer School at the National Physical Laboratory. GRADnet, the largest physics post graduate research school in England, is part of the South East Physics Network (SEPnet), a consortium of nine leading universities promoting physics. Russell presented at the 2015 summer school and was delighted to be asked back.
The 4-day residential school explores the wide range of opportunities open to PhD physicists and comprises a broad menu of workshops and challenges led by different employers designed to offer students an insight into opportunities beyond their PhD.
A consultancy challenge runs throughout the 4 days. Leading companies in their field come with real problems and invite students, working in teams, to create solutions using the skills they have learnt in their PhD. Other companies included IBM, Oxford Instruments and Surrey Satellite Technology.
Companies offer workshops designed to show what life in a given industry sector type is like and what kind of work is involved. The whole event is threaded through with short sessions led by expert speakers looking at some of the issues that confront those working in science: Outreach, Impact, IPR, Ethics and the like.
RBA Acoustics has close ties to various universities in the network and regularly recruits both graduates and undergraduates to full-time posts and placements.