RBA Acoustics have previously led sessions at the 2015 and 2017 GRADnet events, and were delighted to be invited back to the 2019 GRADnet Summer School at the National Physical Laboratory in Teddington recently. GRADnet is part of the South East Physics Network (SEPnet), a consortium of nine leading universities promoting physics, and is the largest physics post graduate research school in England.
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. These are designed to offer students an insight into opportunities beyond their PhD, and a consultancy challenge runs throughout the 4 days.
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.
Leading companies in their field come with real problems and invite students to work in teams to create solutions using the skills they have learnt in their PhD. Other companies at the school included Santander, UK Atomic Energy Authority and GlaxoSmithKlein.
At previous events, RBA Acoustics Director Russell Richardson has run the sessions on his own, but this year he was joined by Joe Allen, Assistant Consultant. Joe attended the 2017 school as a post-grad student and, having kept in contact with Russell over the subsequent months, joined RBA Acoustics himself in 2018. He is living proof of the route from physics research to acoustic consultancy and the students were particularly interested in his experience.