The Techno Tour, held on 9-12 October 2017, was held in Poland between Krakow and Gliwice. 25 PROMETIA Young Generation attendees visited a mining site, a zinc smelter, a zinc electrolyser and the IMN pilot facility, and met with Krakow AGH university students.
What can we say about this tour? As the Chairman of PROMETIA, I am for sure not the most objective person, but frankly, it was a great experience! It was very well organised by our Secretariat but also thanks to the contribution of Kasia Grzesik from AGH and Andrzej Chmielarz, our Vice-President and Witek Kurilak from IMN. And also thanks to our two wonderful guides from IMN, Kornel and Andrzej (not our Vice-President ;-)). Below is a testimonial video from three of the attendees, but I also wanted to share some comments we received from the group.
“The opportunity to visit industrial sites is not common for PhD students, and Poland has a history of mining and smelting. On top of this, the opportunity to be with students and young engineers from other countries working in different domains is always very enriching. Discussing diverging topics, learning from our differences and making links between two fields of study that appear to be completely different for us is a real chance.”
“It was an excellent choice to ask Kornel and Andrzej to be our guides. They were so helpful with all of our questions and shared great information on Poland and the Polish. I might as well point out that the evening and dinner with local researchers were some of the best moments. Everyone was once again so interesting, they shared their work and happily shared their stories about Poland.”
“The Tour was a little stressful for me because I had to act as a guide although I’ve never done it before. However, after our first evening meeting in Filutek pub, I realised that the people are very cool and friendly.”
“Thanks to the visits of academia (AGH, Krakow), the research institute in Gliwice, the mine tailings flotation plant and smelter I was able to get a holistic view of how they work hand in hand. The idea of starting off the visit with a university and ending with industry was great.”
“I met new colleagues with whom I would like to collaborate in the future and I realised the potential of the PROMETIA platform. This tour helped me grow a little more and develop my network. I believe that Europe is still more of a cluster of countries than a real, big united system, but initiatives such as the PROMETIA Tech Tour will support this shift.”
“The most important part of this trip was to meet young scientists from different parts of the world, such as India, China, Russia, French Polynesia and almost all of Europe. I hope that in the future I will be able to participate in the next young scientists meeting organised by PROMETIA. Meeting so many outstanding people is an excellent opportunity to establish close cooperation in the international research-development projects in the future.”
Of course, there are also some points to be improved… no breakfast in the hostel in Krakow, we had to go to a street shop; no 4 star-hotels; no time to rest, going from one visit to lunch, from lunch to a new visit and again to dinner, and then to the pub (or directly to bed!) and unfortunately not a lot of time to really enjoy Krakow… but hey, this was a tech-tour for the young, not a touristic tour!