From Monday 19 to Friday, 23 March 2018, the FNR organised the 8th edition of Chercheurs à l’école – with more researchers and schools taking part than ever before.
The aim of Chercheurs à l’école is to introduce young people to a profession that many know little about. Researchers from public institutions and private companies in Luxembourg tell their personal story: from school to university to their current job.
This enables students to gain insights into researchers’ professional lives and to ask questions about research in Luxembourg. The researchers also get a platform to present their work to a young audience and receive direct feedback.
Largest participation yet
The campaign has been growing, with the number of participants increasing year by year. This year, 124 researchers delivered sessions to 75 classes in a total of 28 different secondary schools across Luxembourg. In 2017, 111 researchers, 66 classes and 26 schools took part.
“We walked around 40 very interested students through our academic background, as well as our interdisciplinary activities in the field of research and development, conveying and discussing advice, motivation and experiences. It is an enriching and motivating event for the students, as well as for the scientists and it is always a lot of fun every year.” – Dr Christian Penny, Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST)
For Laurent Poorters, developer of the Innovation Center at Goodyear, Chercheurs à l’école is about eliminating prejudices, for example:
“Many students still believe that the choice of their academic subjects limits their future career opportunities. However, this is by no means the case, as I myself can testify. Furthermore, hardly anyone knows the variety of research areas that Luxembourg already has to offer, be it at the university, in public institutions, or in industry. Goodyear in Colmar-Berg alone employs more than 1,000 engineers to advance tire development.”
“I think Chercheurs a l´école provides us with a great opportunity to show secondary school students that an academic career can be very rewarding”
The FNR spoke to 5 researchers about why activities such as Chercheurs à l’école are important – read the FNR Highlight
- RTL Télé Lëtzebuerg segment about Chercheurs à l’école (in Luxembourgish)
Promoting exchange between researchers and society: a priority
Over the past 15 years, the Luxembourg Government has invested heavily in research. However, the research tradition in Luxembourg is still young and not everyone is familiar with this area. The FNR wants to provide transparent information and support measures that bring researchers together with society. ‘Chercheurs à l’école’ helps to draw attention to the profession of the researcher and to present it realistically. Not least because exciting fields of work are developing in this growing research sector, for which up-and-coming talents are needed.