In their effort to establish an Early Career Research (ECR) community for all malaria researchers based at London research institutes, PhD students organized a launch event at the Crick Institute to bring everyone together. Research assistants, research technicians, PhD students and junior postdocs who work under either computational or laboratory settings were encouraged to interact with researchers outside their own social/departmental circles and suggest their ideas about the future of this network. None missed the chance to also show-off their ‘Knowles-it-all’ expertise on a malaria-based pub quiz, while enjoying nibbles and drinks.
Over 50 people from four different London-based institutes registered for the event, with a turnout of 30.
With the Christmas break a distant memory and work-weary lab members itching for a break, re-energisation of the work place was desperately in order. And how better to achieve this than with ping pong, pizza and (substantial quantities of) alcohol? Generous funding was granted from the Research Community Fund, allowing PhD students and early career post-docs from the Section of Investigative Medicine and Section of Cell Biology and Functional Genomics to attend an inter-lab social at Bounce Ping Pong on 12th April 2019. Due to popular demand, a round robin competition was held across the two hired tables, with members from different sections paired into doubles teams.
On the evening of Thursday the 7th of February, the Computational Chemistry division of the Chemistry Department held its third monthly research and social event. These meetings started running in September to strengthen the professional and personal relationships between computational research groups, which have found themselves sharing a large open-plan office after the departmental move to the White City campus in Summer 2018. The meetings are mainly organised by the postgraduate students of each group and promote the integration of students of all levels into the wider departmental community.
This month, we put up the event with the generous help of the Graduate School cohort building fund.
On Saturday the 2nd of February 2019, the first-year PhDs from the Bioengineering Department went for a nice evening out, that started with an escape room followed by a nice Italian dinner.
The objective of this activity was fomenting a good relationship and friendship between the first-year PhD students from the Bioengineering Department, as we don’t all know each other despite constantly crossing each other in the hallways. We are all now starting a 3-4 year journey where these relationships are going to be invaluable, not only on a personal level but also on the professional one, as thriving engineering usually requires (besides obvious personal effort) help/knowledge from others and team effort.
Postgraduate students based at the Imperial Hammersmith Hospital campus took to the ice for a PG student social at the Natural History Museum on Wednesday the 19th of December. This social brought together research students from the departments of Medicine, Surgery & Cancer and the NHLI in a festive skating session followed by drinks at ħ bar, allowing PG students on the campus to mingle across different departments and disciplines.
The event was a great success, bringing together research students from across departments and institutes based at the Hammersmith hospital campus, as well as other research staff that were interested in getting involved with the event (including clinical and postdoctoral fellows).
by Eloise Matheson, PhD student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering
The first PhD networking event for robotics related researchers was held on Thursday 15th November 2018. Sponsored by the Imperial College Graduate School Research Community Fund and the supported by the Imperial College Robotics Forum (Network of Robotics), this event was aimed to connect PhD researchers across the college that face similar technical and research challenges! Robotics in general is a very multi-disciplinary topic, and with over 28 robotics labs spread across departments and faculties, this event was a great chance to bring people together. Over 50 people from 15 different labs registered for the event, with a turnout of around 40.
by Martin Prießner, PhD student in the Department of Chemistry
On Tuesday the 11th of December the first event of this year’s Cross-CDT event series took place. The Cross-CDT event series aims to strengthen the already established friendships and form new ones between CDT students of different disciplines across the different cohort years. By organising meetings and fun activities with an informal character, the participating students get the opportunity to exchange their PhD experiences and professional and private matters. This enables them to form long-lasting friendships which will hopefully surpass their PhD studies.
On this winter-like evening on the 11th of December a total of 18 CDT students from 4 different CDT programs across two cohort years gathered together in front of the library at Imperial College London.
by Inne Nauwelaers, PhD student at the National Heart and Lung Institute
On Wednesday, 12th of December 2018, students at St. Mary’s School of Medicine building got together for the second building-wide party. Thanks to the financial aid of the Graduate School, we were able to organise a Christmas party, bringing people together from every department at this campus: the School of Public Health, Virology, Respiratory medicine, Infectious Diseases and Paediatrics.
The reason we took the initiative and wanted to bring everyone together, is due to the fact that there is no communal space for people to gather and therefore interaction between departments is often limited.
In search of an activity to build bonds and healthy competition between the PhD cohort at the CEP, we found the Ultimate Team Building Experience as the best option. It offered a novel way to explore the City of London helping our first year students to get a taste of what this city has to offer whilst getting to know their peers in an unconventional way. Following up the activity with a lunch discussion helped the students to get familiarized with other research topics and get a sense of the wide variety of topics our department holds. We would definitely recommend this activity to other departments and would love to turn this into an every-year activity.
The first Laser Tag event to connect PhD students from different departments, took place at the brand-new facility “Bunker 51” on Saturday 23rd of June. The aim of this initiative was to mix students with various research interests, to develop our research communities within Imperial and foster collaborations inter-departments.
This Laser Tag event, was an icebreaking way of encouraging PhD attendants to work together in a series of mini games played with guns which fired infrared beams. After the team building event, a picnic hangout with pizzas and drinks in Greenwich Park offered a more relaxed ambiance for students to get to know more about each other and their projects.