19 - The UoN Open Day 2017


Hi crew,

I know, it was not a long time ago when I wrote my last post on the blog but things here in Nottingham happen quite fast and today I have a new story to tell you about: a few weeks ago I worked as ‘Demonstrator’ in the laboratories of the Department of Civil Engineering, at the Open Day 2017 at the University of Nottingham.

Open Days are events that are really important for the hosting institutions and for its guests in England. Basically, at Open Days in Nottingham, but in the UK in general, students from the high schools come to visit the university with their parents and make a choice regarding continuing their studies and their future work career. They have the possibility to visit the laboratories, classes, experience all the facilities that the university offers, chat with current students, and talk with their future professors. Everything must be carefully organised and planned because the event is basically as an advert for the institutions and the city itself, and from these days depends if the university will get the best students or not.
As I have already mentioned, I took part to the event as a ‘Deomnstrator’. Actually, I should say ‘we took part’. In fact, I and Matteo (ESR9) helped the organisers of the event by introducing to the future students the laboratories of the Department of Civil Engineering. We prepared, therefore, a very short presentation for them including some very cool ‘special effects’. It has been the opportunity for us to take the challenge of speaking in public to an audience of people with basically no technical background and, consequently, we had to explain everything in a short time, using simple words, and being the most effective we can to impress them. With us, we had a poster and a few samples of concrete and asphalt. Nothing else and, trust me, it is not really easy to make exciting asphalt and concrete, but we did it! At the end of our presentation, we received a few questions and we had some very nice discussions with people about materials, their performance, and their applications in civil engineering.

Here there are a few pictures of the event that took place last Friday and Saturday (30th June and 1st July 2017) at the University of Nottingham:

Figure 1 – Me introducing materials to a couple of students during the Open Day 2017 (explaining the difference between porous concrete and low-density concrete).

Figure 2 – Matteo repeating my experience of presenting at the Open Day 2017 (talking about porous asphalt).

Figure 3 – A few students brought through the labs by current students at the University of Nottingham (this is only one of the multiple groups that me and Matteo received during the day).

Figure 4 – Luis (my supervisor) during his presentation about the different applications in civil engineering of usual asphalt mixtures and porous asphalts.

Figure 5 – Me introducing the TRUSS ITN project to a couple of friends, discussing the topic “why research is important in civil engineering?”.

During the 2 days, we had the chance to talk with about a hundred students and their parents. It was a very nice experience that me and Matteo hope we may have the opportunity to repeat in Septemeber when the next Open Day will take place here in Nottingham. Cool, right?

Here you can find news about the next Open Days at the University of Nottingham (15th – 16th September 2017): http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/ugstudy/visitingus/opendays/opendays.aspx. There is also an app of the event that helps people in keeping track for the schedule of the event https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/uon-open-day-2017/id1236053173?mt=8 and a hashtag (for those who are familiar with Twitter) #UoNOpenDay to make people interested in the event informed about things happening during the day at the Open Day at the University of Nottingham.

I hope you enjoyed also this latest post and as always if you want to keep informed about my project, TRUSS ITN and everything happens around me keep visiting the blog from time to time! 
Tomorrow, for example, I will go back to TRL for the 'PhD Day 2017'. It is an event held by TRL in collaboration with the TRL Academy where PhD students that collaborate with the laboratory as part of their research will have the possibility to introduce themselves and their projects and discuss the current and future needs of the transport industry in the UK and in Europe. Therefore I am going to present my research and, possibly, exchange information and start a new collaboration with people in the field. I cannot wait to attend the event tomorrow and tell you more about it! Sounds exciting, no?
Just stay tuned then because I am going to update you towards the TRL 'PhD Day 2017' event shortly!

P.S.: ah, did you notice the new widget of social media on the left-hand side of the blog (or in the menu if you are using the mobile version of the web browser)? That's cool, isn't it? It allows you, my friends, to follow me and all news regarding the TRUSS ITN project through the social media with just one click. Easy, isn't it?! ;)

And that’s all for me for today!
Cheers,

FP13

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