What's in an event for you?
Sometimes it's nice to remind ourselves of the obvious, and here you told us that above all you wish to meet contacts in your field and to talk science at our events. While we appreciate that there's little time and money to do this too often (hence the request for local and online meetings), we know that there's nothing quite like a face-to-face meeting. EMBL alumni reunions only take place every 3-4 years, but this gives us enough time to plan a truly irresistible programme, attracting a large majority of you - our highly valued alumni.
We hope to see as many of you (both as contributors and participants) at our 2014 reunion in EMBL Heidelberg - and for the record - 300 of you said you're interested.
More local and online events please!
Almost all alumni comments regarding events listed time and money as the limiting factors for not attending. Alumni therefore requested more online and local events, and a few asked for industry-related events.
Clearly, to attract alumni there has to be a good balance of science (as indicated by 65% of alumni who would attend meetings organized around courses and conferences), but also an attractive opportunity to meet with a network of people otherwise difficult to meet.
Our three annual alumni events are organized around (1) The EMBO Meeting (which takes place in a different city every September, and which attracts a large number of EMBL staff and alumni), (2) the EMBL Summer party (where we offer a light-science networking programme in the morning before the party, and (3) following the Autumn Alumni Association board meetings which are held alternately at all the EMBL sites.
In the meantime, we are looking into providing more local and online events.
What is a local chapter?
This was a frequently asked question in the survey. It is simply a regional alumni meeting. In response to this confusion, we will search with the Alumni Association board for a new term for such meetings.
Social events organised around sports
While the percentage of the participants who showed interest in attending an alumni event around a sporting activity was relatively low (26%), this actually represents 200 people! People whose sporting interest are as diverse and interdisciplinary as their science! The majority of requests were for hiking, running, skiing, climbing and biking, with a few calls for sailing, rowing, football, rugby, basketball, tennis and cricket!
We will discuss practical solutions, and try to introduce one such event in 2013. Please contact us if you recognise a good opportunity for an alumni sporting event.
Find out more survey results in the following sections: