Oxford's prestigious MSc in Neuroscience and 4-year Wellcome Trust doctoral training programme in Neuroscience celebrated 20 years with a reunion for students past and present.
The alumni event was very successful and attracted around 80 alumni over the two days. We began on Friday with a talk from Kia Nobre on the history, set up and development of the programme, particularly the research projects, over the last 20 years. That was followed by a talk from Colin Akerman who is an alumnus of the 1996 cohort who talked about his experiences during and since and his role now “on the other side of the fence” as a member of the Organising Committee, supervisor and examiner. On Saturday morning the 2 longer talks came from Andy King as current Course Director who discussed the course today, its developments and some of the more bizarre projects that had been proposed and from Heidi Johansen-Berg, another alumna who talked about her career during and after the MSc and how the MSc influenced her successful career.
The afternoons on both days consisted of less formal, short presentations from alumni entitled “Life after the MSc” and these also contained some lovely reminiscences of their experiences during the MSc year (sometimes with great photos!). Each day ended with a selection of career discussions, billed as networking events, where a variety of academic and non-academic careers were represented and more junior members of the audience could discuss informally how the alumni decided on these careers, what it involved and how they could also get that job!
There was also plenty of time for socialising and reminiscing and a great time seems to have been had by all who attended, judging by the comments posted on our Alumni Facebook page!