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Advice and discussion on going abroad

The first SynCat Christmas meeting took place on the 16th December 2019. The mini sym­pos­ium initiated by Prof. Rehbein com­pris­ed talks by senior SynCat students about their external modules providing facts and figures on their chemistry projects abroad and their personal experiences and advices. In a second part the discussions and feedback round with lecturers, fueled by delicious food and seasonal drinks covered ideas on ad­di­tio­ns to the curriculum, planned ex­cur­sions and general networking of the different SynCat generations. 

From the Regensburg SynCat labs around the world

Three talks held by Florence Babawale, Martin Gawron and Lara Šibila shed light on the process of how to find THE place to go to for your external module and provided help­ful first-hand experiences, advices & tricks on how to make the most of your research trip abroad. With the specific experiences on their stays in Tarragona (Catalonia, Spain), Edinburgh and Glasgow (Scotland, UK) the general questions an­swer­ed ranged from daily life to scientific challenges. With that, most discussions evolved around very prac­ti­cal aspects, i.e. how and when to organize the trip or how to cope with quite varying work­load and in­fra­struc­ture in other universities’ research chemistry labs.

At the core, however, was the question how one finds a suitable research group who is doing the chemistry one is the most in­ter­ested in. For establishing the contact to the group of interest in the next step the direct contact to the guest speakers at the regular colloquia was emphasized besides the standard route via the Regensburg professors.

Living SynCat - past and future

Christmas is not only a time to socialize but also a time to look back on the past year and ahead of what will be coming the next. In this respect Prof. König highlighted especially the successful securing of the continuous funding of the Elite Graduate Program "Ad­van­ced Synthesis and Catalysis" by the Elite Network of Bavaria, thanking all who took part in it, students and lecturers alike. 

Discussion later that evening ‘catalyzed’ by more Christmas cookies, food and mulled wine let to ideas for workshop topics, invited lectures and excursion for 2020, making everyone looking forward to the time being spent with and inside SynCat! 

Text: Prof. Julia Rehbein, Elite Graduate Program "Advanced Synthesis and Catalysis“