The initiative, promoted by the Fundació Catalunya La Pedrera, aims to encourage scientific vocations. Includes stays in research centers such as the CEAB-CSIC.
This July 28 has been the last day of work at the CEAB for the student who this year has completed the stay of the “Youth and Science” program. For two weeks she has been able to work side by side with research staff both in the facilities and laboratories that the center has in Blanes and in the Urban River Lab, in Montornès del Vallès.
Among the specific tasks that she has carried out is field work on La Tordera river. There, she collect water samples. Later – already in the Blanes laboratories – they have been prepared, analyzed and classified according to the presence of macro, meso and microplastics. It has done so under the tutelage and constant accompaniment of researchers from the center, such as the head of the continental ecology department, Helena Guasch.
Another of the works that she has completed has been to determine the existence of microorganisms that can live in plastics in a plasticizer, prepared and analyzed in the molecular biology laboratory.
Evaluation of the stay
Candela Osberger, the student who has worked for two weeks at the Center, has rated the experience as “very good. It has been very real, totally put into practice. Being able to see first-hand what people who are dedicated to research do day by day has been very positive”.
The student, who is studying high school in Girona, explained the reasons that led her to apply as a candidate for the Fundació Catalunya La Pedrera program: “Science subjects have always been the ones I liked the most. The sustainability part also motivates me a lot.”
The “Youth and Science” takes place in three phases: the first year, the fifty students selected to participate, spend a stay at MónNatura Pirineus. They begin to work on the chosen research topic. The second year, the stay is carried out in a reference research center in the chosen fields. In the third phase, the young people must write and deliver a scientific article, the result of the research carried out.
Obserger argues why they chose the CEAB-CSIC for the second phase: “My research project is about artificial photosynthesis and possible new fuels, to search for clean and renewable energy. Due to the research work carried out in the center related to plastic pollution, with the environment, we thought it was a very good option”.
We have been hosting students from this Fundació Catalunya La Pedrera program for years. Collaboration allows students to work on the necessary skills to dedicate themselves to research and, above all, contribute to the promotion of scientific vocations.