1st European Summer School for Yousef Jameel Scholars
52 research students from 8 universities gathered at Cardiff University in June for the first Yousef Jameel European Summer School.
Two days of intensive activity included presentations given by the students themselves, workshops on global issues and interdisciplinary research, and keynote speeches from leading academics from around the UK.
The overall theme of the Summer School was Sustainable Development, so there was naturally much discussion about what the words 'sustainable' and 'development' mean. This discussion was enhanced by the inspiring keynote speeches, which covered issues such as power supplies in rural communities, food as a tool for social justice, and the role of Islam in conservation and development.
Each student was able to give a 'flashlight' presentation of their research - proving both how effective a 2-minute message can be, and also how difficult it is to summarize complexity in such a short time. Some students were allowed the luxury of a 15-minute presentation, so that they could go into more detail about the methods, results and objectives of their work.
From the Cambridge group, Oluwabukola Temitope Gbotosho (Nigeria) spoke eloquently about her research into sickle cell disease, one of the commonest and severest inherited diseases. Even though it affects millions of people worldwide, research into its prevention and treatment remain a low priority in the developing countries where it is most frequently found. OIuwabukola's research is based in the University's Department of Veterinary Medicine, in the Pathobiology research group.
Muhammad Faizan Abdalqader (Palestine) presented his work on increasing the durability and sustainability of cement, using industrial by-products and reactive magnesia. Muhammad works in the Geotechnical & Environmental Group within the Department of Engineering.
All Yousef Jameel Scholars share two characteristics - their research has the potential directly to improve the lives of others, and they are fully funded through their PhDs by the philanthropist Yousef Jameel.