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SMAE doctoral students steal the show at Sir Bernard Crossland Symposium

Poster competition winners (from left): Katie Harte, Ryan McFadden, Clare Burnett

Three doctoral students from SMAE took part in the 22nd Sir Bernard Crossland Symposium, held at Ulster University from the 17th to18th of April, 2019. This is an annual conference that has been running since 1997 under the auspices of Engineers Ireland and the Council of Professors of Mechanical Engineering in Irish Universities. The delegates for this symposium included academics, industrialists and PhD students.

Doctoral students from the School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering at Queens won 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prizes in the poster competition. They had been selected through a rigorous selection procedure within the school which was compulsory for all doctoral students in the second year of their PhD studies at Queens. At the symposium, they competed against participants from other Irish universities including the University of Limerick, NUI Galway, Trinity College Dublin and Ulster University. The first prize for the best student poster went to Ms. Katie Harte, who was awarded € 600, while the second and third prizes were awarded to Ms. Clare Burnett and Mr Ryan McFadden, who received € 400 and € 200 respectively.

Talking about her experience at the event, Katie said that it gave her good practice at making a poster based on her research, presenting it to an audience and meeting other people. Clare mentioned that it was really good to see different PhD topics from multiple disciplines and interacting with the other researchers broadened her horizons. Ryan mentioned that he really enjoyed networking with other doctoral students from all over Ireland. He will be going to Limerick for part of his doctoral research and this event gave him a great head start ahead of his visit. He also became aware of others in Ireland who were doing similar work to his own, which he would have never known without this event.

The symposium programme this year included oral paper presentations from PhD students with prizes funded by a bequest from Sir Bernard and administered by Engineers Ireland. Sir Bernard was formerly a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the school and had served as Pro-Vice-Chancellor before retiring. This symposium pays tribute to Sir Bernard’s deep interest in education and research in Mechanical Engineering. It is also a platform to encourage collaboration with industry through high quality research demonstrated in the papers and posters.