Author: Renaldo Bernard
The University of Southampton’s pioneering School of Physics and Astronomy welcomed under 100 potential students and their parents into its universe getting them excited about the school and what it has to offer. This was all part of the school’s open day event on the 13th of February, 2012 that was specially planned to give a snapshot of what student life could be for the next 3 to 4 years within the school discovering the wonders of our universe.
The event began with a well received and enthusiastic talk by Prof. David Smith. He gave very friendly, warm and personal introductions to key academics during his 45 minute presentation. The very personable Prof. Smith discussed all the impressive perks offered to students in the school providing that they perform well. Some of the opportunities he mentioned included students being able to spend their final year at the world-renowned Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Boston, USA, CERN or pursuing placements at companies like MERCK.
Attendees were then led from lab to lab hearing 10 minute presentations from several very approachable and sometimes nervous academics who took time from their busy schedules to help inspire these young minds. Dr. Hendrik Ulbricht simplified his research in quantum, light and matter, followed by Prof. Steve King who led a brief exploration of the forces of nature. Last stop was a space mission with Prof. Betty Lanchester. Her talk touched on Aurora and amazing light shows in the sky and a few students readily expressed their interest in such.
Despite some technical difficulties, the day ended with a very interesting lecture by Prof. Anne Tropper that was filled with many captivating demonstrations about the power of light and lasers. One of the attendees were called to the front of the lecture theatre to play some of his music which was later transmitted down a laser beam to speakers!!! You can see some of the other demonstrations in the photos below.
By the end of the day attendees were sure to get a feel for the school’s community and culture, knowledge of its superb facilities and future ambitious goals everyone in the school are busily and passionately working towards achieving.
For more information on the University of Southampton’s School of Physics and Astronomy or to apply please visit www.phys.soton.ac.uk.