Well-attended Life Sciences PhD Days at the University of Luxembourg
The Life Sciences PhD Days 2016, organised by PhD candidates of the University of Luxembourg, took place at the Maison du Savoir on the Belval Campus in Esch-sur-Alzette from 24th to 25th November. Every year, this event gathers numerous PhD candidates and other young researchers working in the biomedical research field.
The Life Sciences PhD Days are a great opportunity for doctoral candidates to build networks, present their projects through oral and poster presentations, receive critical feedback and learn about the research projects of their peers. The two-day event included four keynote lectures from international invited speakers: Dr Liliana Bernardino from the University of Beira Interior, Covilha, Portugal; Dr Nicola Zamboni from the Institute of Molecular Systems Biology, Zurich, Switzerland; Dr Uwe Ohler from the Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology, Berlin, Germany; and Dr Steffen Scholpp from the Institute of Toxicology and Genetics, Karlsruhe, Germany. There were also three poster sessions and a range of oral presentations of the PhD candidates’ research projects. The conference was closed with a fun-filled quiz evening.
Next to the substantial support by the Doctoral School of Systems and Molecular Biomedicine (now a programme of the Doctoral School in Science and Engineering) of the University of Luxembourg, the event was sponsored by private companies developing reagents, consumables and laboratory equipment. LIH contributed by offering the prizes for the best three oral presentations given by PhD candidates. The winners will be announced in the coming days.
Egle Danileviciute, PhD candidate at the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine and visiting researcher at LIH, was a member of the organising committee. She tells about how it was to be responsible for event organisation for the first time: ‘The PhD Days were successful thanks of all the great people who contributed to the conference. We were seven organisers who did their best to make the event attractive for students and researchers. We shared all the tasks and each person was responsible for a different aspect of the organisation. My responsibility was sponsorship. As a young scientist, I had no previous experience on how to deal with this, therefore the beginning was extremely challenging! I had to overcome my fear to contact people who I had never met before and ask them for financial support. Step by step I learned how to approach each potential sponsor, and with the time I started to enjoy it. I do not see my future in academic research and I believe that this experience as a fundraiser will help me for my future carrier. All in all, organising a scientific event for more than 100 people is as enjoyable as it is challenging. I recommend to everyone to try it at least once!’
Welcome speech by Prof Rudi Balling, Director of the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine.
Left: Presentation of the structure of the new Doctoral School in Science and Engineering of the University of Luxembourg by Prof Serge Haan, Head of the Doctoral School.