Γεια σας! καλώς ήρθατε στην Πάτρα! (Hello! Welcome to Patras!)
In August the University of Patras welcomed around 550 participants, whereof 230 students for the 19th congress of the European Society of Biomechanics. The congress started with pre-courses on Sunday focusing on the nanomechanics of cells, tissues and biomaterials and on wavelet analysis of biological signals. The following days were filled with exciting science, spread over three interesting plenary sessions and multiple parallel and poster sessions. During lunch breaks and after a full day of listening, presenting and networking, the participants could explore some nearby historical sites like Olympia or simply enjoy the wonderful weather (around 35°C) at the beach or in the swimming pool!
The ESB student event took place on Monday evening, where about 200 students were welcomed with some drinks in the garden of Achaia Beach Hotel. The evening started with a speed networking game where the participants could get to know each other in an informal way during two minutes before switching to the next participant. In this way the students were mixed and many new groups of students were formed -some of them who continued to hang out together the rest of the congress. Afterwards delicious typical Greek specialties were served for dinner accompanied by Greek music. The highlight of the evening was certainly the traditional Greek dancing. The students continued meeting new people during this very nice summer evening which ended in a great party next to the swimming pool!
After two long days of interesting presentations, it was time for the conference dinner, another highlight of the ESB meeting. This year the conference dinner was held at Dasylio, a restaurant located at the top of a hill in Patras, from which we had a magnificent view over the bay and recently built bridge of Patras. During the excellent dinner the president announced the locations of the next ESB meetings. Also, the winners of student awards were announced and the travel grants, mobility grants and best thesis awards were distributed.
The 19th ESB conference was again a successful meeting of great minds, inspiring us with fresh ideas for the upcoming World Congress in Boston in July 2014! We hope to see you all there and if you have any ideas, remarks or wishes for particular student events, please contact us!
ESB mobility awards for young researchers
This year, the ESB has launched the first ESB Mobility Awards for Young researchers, a great initiative to give young researchers the opportunity to do part of their PhD or postdoctoral research abroad. Two awards with a value of €4000 were available on a competitive basis. The mobility awards 2013 were awarded to Ana Campos from University of Sheffield, UK and Michele Casanova from ETH Zurich, Switzerland. Ana will go to Politecnico di Milano, Italy, to study the influence of scaffold surface effects on dynamic seeding. The Children’s Hospital of Westmead, Australia, welcomes Michele to investigate the interplay between bisphosphonates and anabolic treatments in fracture healing. We all wish them a very interesting and enriching experience and look forward to hearing all about it in the upcoming newsletters!
Student mobility – A visit to TU Eindhoven as an academic guest – from Silke Wüst
It has only been a few weeks since I left my home university, ETH Zurich, where I am currently doing my PhD to discover a new biomechanics lab. I am at the end of my PhD and I am visiting Eindhoven to discuss and write up my research and parts of the thesis. While my professor is at ETH, my PhD supervisor has worked at TU/e since some months. To be close to her in the final phase is a nice opportunity to have effective discussions and direct feedback on the writing. The advantage of doing a lab exchange at the end of the thesis is the great networking possibility. One gets to know many new people from the field and their research and maybe gets some more ideas about possible job opportunities.
Beside the science there is always also a personal experience combined with a stay abroad. For me, moving from Switzerland to the Netherlands was really moving from the mountains to the flat. I discovered instantaneously that bikes are truly the most common mode of transportation here, and I was very lucky that I could borrow one right from the first day. The bike-culture here comes along not only with a huge infrastructure but also a completely different traffic regulations. Quite different is also lunch and dinner. While nice canteen-menus spoil hungry students in Switzerland and coffee shops on the campus which invite to extend lunch to go for coffee with colleagues, Dutch students bring their sandwiches from home and also shift most of the social activities to the evening. I am very happy to have the opportunity to spend some weeks during my PhD in Eindhoven. Even though the work-to-leisure ratio is a bit higher compared to an exchange at the beginning of the PhD, I really enjoy getting to know different people and a different culture during daily life, going to work, buying food at the groceries or trying to find out how the public transportation system (or bike traffic regulations J) work. Here are some impressions from the Philips-town Eindhoven:TU/e, visiting Van Gogh’s home town Nuenen and the first Philips X-ray tube from 1918.
The ESB website offers information concerning ESB meetings, awards, affiliated societies, and so on. We recently created a section “job opportunities”. This page lists the latest job opportunities in the field of Biomechanics, specifically for PhD/Masters students, post-docs and senior/faculty positions. If you are looking for a new position, or have a position to offer, this is the place to advertise! Moreover, stay in touch with all the new interesting people you met during the ESB conference by connecting to our Facebook or LinkedIn-pages (Search for “European Society of Biomechanics – Student Members” or “European Society of Biomechanics”)!
By Aurélie and Silke, on behalf of the whole student committee