Sixth form science students from The Mount School, York, recently travelled to Switzerland to visit the Large Hadron Collider at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) and the United Nations (UN).
The Mount’s Head of Physics, Matt Cannon, said the trip was: “an opportunity to see modern day physics at work, to see modern equipment at work and to converse with researchers who are at the cutting-edge of major global developments.
“There are currently scientists from 21 different countries all working at CERN. Not many British school students today necessarily appreciate that science is a very international field at this level. They don’t tend to take advantage of all the international research and resources that are out there, nor to use them in school."
Matt Cannon tutoring students in class
The pupils had the opportunity to experience the ethnically diverse, functioning scientific community in a highly complex organisation. After CERN, the group visited the UN in Geneva, another ethnically diverse community, to get a taste for the ‘political side of life’.
Matt explained how he got the idea of taking a school group to CERN. “When I was an undergraduate, I went over to CERN as part of my final year dissertation. It is the very pinnacle of physics. Even though the facility is so close to the UK, it strikes me as strange CERN is not much used by British schools as a resource.”
Adrienne Richmond, Principal, said: “A Mount education breathes life into academic study which is how our pupils develop a natural love of learning. Matt Cannon’s initiative to visit CERN and let the pupils appreciate how crucial international cooperation can be in STEM (science, technology, engineering, maths) careers is a brilliant opportunity to inspire young minds.”
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