Today was the final day of the two week LIYSF adventure. After the opportunity to sleep-in and have breakfast, we had a participants forum, basically another debate session. However this time the debates were over very controversial topics, such as: use of nuclear power for the future, using pre-embryos for research, and whether science today has lost it’s perspectives on ethics. The debates got pretty heated pretty quickly, and I think it ended up putting most people in a slightly angry mindset for the next hour. However, I find that these issues are very commonly avoided, and having discussions about them and understanding each others’ viewpoints to be incredibly important if we are to work together to do science.
After lunch everyone seemed to relax and we dressed up into our finest, and welcomed an amazing speaker, Professor Lord Robert Winston, an incredibly awarded doctor and scientist, most famous for his development in surgery to reverse a sterilization operation that woman may have had. He came in to talk about the impact science can have on society. We looked at examples through history and saw that with a scientist’s abilities to do science, there also comes a great social responsibility. A very good speaker with a wealth of knowledge and experience, he was a fantastic finish for the final lecture of LIYSF.
Following the lecture we moved straight into the closing ceremonies. We sent out many, many thank-you’s to all of the staff and organizers who put in SO much effort in making this forum a smashing success; our hands could not take any more clapping after that. I honestly can’t believe that it is over, these two weeks have absolutely flown by!
After the last cafeteria dinner sitting at the Chinese and Tiawanese table, we finished packing up, and then headed down to the Old Chelsea hall one more time for the going away party. There was lot’s of music, lights, and people, and it was great because everywhere I turned, there was another friend that I had made during our time here in London. There were lot’s of journal signing, signatures on T-shirts, hugs, and “Come visit!”s, as were about to part ways. Zack from England’s phrase was “Goodbye forever,” so I guess not everyone was so optimistic. With so many new friends it was difficult to say good-bye, but I do know that at least a few of those friendships will last a very, very long time, and I’m happy to hold on to the countless amazing memories that we forged together at this forum.
I leave for Gatwick first thing in the morning and am heading to Amsterdam to visit some family for the next few days before heading home to Vancouver. Thanks for following me on my blog! I just want to end with a huge shout-out to the University of the Fraser Valley who made this entire opportunity possible with their scholarship! If there are any young science students at UFV reading this, be sure to apply for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, not only with it expand your worldview and engage you in various areas of current science, it’s an opportunity to see the world and make a huge number of new friends with lasting memories!