Wednesday 1 August 2012

Alex's Work Experience Blog

This is my blog about my time doing work experience at Southampton University Physics and Astronomy department. My name is Alex Stewart and I have been working with Pearl John and Sadie Jones of the outreach office of the Physics and Astronomy department. I am a fiveteen year old GCSE student who has a passion for maths amd science. Hence why I asked for work experience at the physics and astronomy department.

I have had some great times at my work experience but I cannot overlook the many tedious tasks that I have been set and done during my time there. With copious amounts of writing, photocopying, erands and laptop break downs to keep me busy throughout my eight and a half hour work days. I also have to admit that at times it has felt like sifting through an endless riverbed of sand and pebbles. Representing that no matter how much you do there is always more of it that needs to be sifted through. Yawn!

But then there was the gold nuggets amongst the sand and rock.

These gold nuggets took the form of scientific experiments, making machines and intelegent conversations with scientists about their work. One of the real golden moments of my time there was making my own hologram. Which was doubley worth it as Pearl and I had just worked round a large dilema which we had with the chemicals needed to develop the hologram, making our sucess in creating one all the sweeter! There was also the moment I had finished biulding the Hydrocar and after a first pathetic attempt mad it work. Watching it scoot around obsticles in its way was very satisfying as it had taken half of the day previously and the whole of thursday moring to figure out how to get the mavilous machine to work. Then there was also talking to an astronomer about his research of the findings of Integral, a satilite telescope, and about how it picks up the gamma rays that stars and black holes emit.

Although I don't currently understand fully what he does and what Integral does, I had an exciting conversation with him and about space and what we can find there. Those points of my work experience along with a couple of others made the whole experience and overal high. As they far eclipsed the boring normal work.

So my view of work experience is positive as you learn and sometimes have great fun and would recomend it to anyone else as it was a brilliant experience. Of course it has its down side but nothing in life doesn't have one and what you get out of it is so worth the slightly boring tasks. This was truely a life changing point for me and I would do it again.

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