Goethe University: Kick-off for the German-Canadian Summer School at the Goethe University


They had to wait several months before their first “real” meeting could take place – now the time has finally come. As part of a summer school, 13 students from Frankfurt’s twin city Toronto and their 22 fellow students from the Goethe University Frankfurt meet in person for the first time. “It’s nice to finally have everyone together. The students really worked hard and did great research work,” says the organizer of the summer school, Prof. Laura Sagunski from the Institute for Theoretical Physics. She got the project off the ground together with Prof. Jürgen Schaffner-Bielich and her colleagues at York University in Canada.

In the winter semester, the young people worked in self-organized teams on very real physical data and questions relating to dark matter. This is made possible by an innovative international teaching project called “EXPLORE: EXPeriential Learning Opportunity through Research and Exchange”, which is based on the teaching format of “research-based learning”. The aim is not only to impart physical knowledge to the students, but also to give them a practical impression of modern international research work. Sagunski emphasizes: “The cooperation of the students should also strengthen skills in the area of ​​intercultural communication and scientific cooperation in heterogeneous teams.”

On Monday, the EXPLORE summer school was opened at the Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies on the Riedberg campus. Mayor Dr. Nargess Eskandari-Grünberg, who herself only recently traveled to Toronto, gave the students a warm welcome: “It is particularly important to me that Frankfurt is further strengthened as a science location in the future. Especially in times when scientific findings are being questioned, it is important for researchers to join forces across national borders. I am particularly pleased that young people from Toronto and Frankfurt are researching such an exciting topic together.”

Afterwards, Prof. Luciano Rezzolla gave a lecture on the formation of the first images of black holes. “It’s great to see how motivated young scientists are,” he says. “I am all the more pleased to be able to support the project ideally and financially through our research cluster ELEMENTS.”

A week full of exciting workshops and lectures awaits the students. The sporting and cultural offer is not neglected either: In addition to stand-up paddling on the Main, a city tour through Frankfurt is on the program.

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