Juliette Behra was awarded a Rideal Travel Bursary in June 2016 to attend the ECI conference entitled ‘Colloidal, Macromolecular & Biological Gels: Formulation, Properties & Applications’. Juliette is a second-year PhD student at the University of Leeds working on the structure-property relationships in formulations containing sodium carboxymethyl cellulose (Na CMC). Here, she describes below how her attendance has helped her to develop from both personal and scientific points of views.
'Thanks to the Rideal Travel Bursary awarded by the SCI/RSC joint Colloid and Surface Science Group, I could present a poster and give a talk at the ECI conference on colloidal, macromolecular and biological gels (Austria, 10-14 July 2016). The poster was about ageing phenomena observed in sodium carboxymethyl cellulose solutions. It was a good opportunity to discuss some intriguing features and to get some insights from other scientists. The talk was related to my most recent work involving both rheology and light scattering techniques to look at sodium carboxymethyl cellulose formulations. The questions and discussions which followed the talk were very interesting and gave me a few ideas to go ahead.
'The conference was attended by 50 people from 14 different countries. Its small size made the atmosphere very friendly and enabled me to talk to nearly all the participants. The talks covered a wide range of gel-related topics and were a great source of inspiration. The free time left by the organisers in-between sessions gave me the opportunity to talk about my data and the issues I am currently facing with a few experts in my field. Such discussions have been very helpful and given me lots of a new idea to investigate.
'Attending this conference has been a very good and fruitful experience. It has allowed me to enhance my communication skills, to increase my knowledge about gels, to get new ideas for my PhD and to meet great people in my area. I am now looking forward to trying the ideas collected during the conference! I am very grateful to all the people who have supported me throughout the whole process. I finally wish to thank my PhD supervisors, Drs Timothy Hunter, Johan Mattsson and Olivier Cayre, for having allowed me to attend this conference, as well as the SCI/RSC joint Colloid and Surface Science Group for having enabled this attendance by awarding me a Rideal travel bursary.'
University of Leeds