Two students from CSMS have become the first school students to present a paper at the Symposium on Space Educational Activities, sponsored by the European Space Agency and hosted by the University of Leicester.

The symposium is held annually and provides an international stage for university students and academics to discuss current and future Space Educational Activities in Europe and beyond. Alfie Baker and Sarah Pengelly, both in year 13 at CSMS, were invited to present their work on tracking glacial melting using satellite images after they won awards at the Asia and Pacific Conference for Young Scientists in Thailand last year.

“The conference has been a really unique experience for our students” said Dr Nick Gower, Lead on Research at CSIA. “We are honoured to be the first school group to be invited to present at the symposium. Our students have shared a stage with world experts and have discussed their research with industry leaders.”

The project was piloted by The Institute of Research in Schools (IRIS), with whom CSIA is fortunate to share strong links. “In the past year, we have had students working on a number of IRIS projects, covering everything from particle physics to genetics” said Dr Gower. “These projects are one of the many ways that students are able to engage with university-level research.”

Alfie and Sarah’s presentation was so well received that they won a special commendation from the symposium organisers “in recognition of (their) outstanding oral presentation”.