A valuable message

My friend Olga Jasnovidova has recently finished her PhD studies in Brno in Czech republic. In her acknowledgement speech she concluded the 7 years-long work and gave a message for young ones. Here it is.

“Science is one of the most creative fields to work in”

Through my PhD studies I have learned that science has two dimensions: one scientific, and one human… and that, of the two, the human dimension is the more difficult to grasp.

I understood that, in order to achieve your goals, you must not only care about your work or yourself. You have got to care about the people around you: senior and junior students, technicians, facility managers, senior colleagues, your supervisors. As you step into PhD studies, you should not expect them to support and motivate you, but rather you yourself should start by supporting and motivating them.

I have also learned that one of the most effective ways to grow and develop is to ask for feedback, then learn to accept it and moreover learn to give constructive feedback yourself. This process can be painful for our egos, but it is the only way to grow.

Most importantly, I have learned that there are always several ways to achieve the same goal. There is no one correct way to reach one’s target. Therefore, you should always stay open to new ways to achieve your goals.

Based on my experience, I would like to say to younger students that they should not fear anything new or unfamiliar. Please don’t create any mental barriers for yourselves. Academic research seems like a very conventional and strict field after Bachelor’s or Master’s studies or peer review, but it is not so. Science is one of the most creative fields to work in, providing endless opportunities to grow and discover. Just learn the rules and then use them to create. You can do something truly unique for the first time in human history, something that will lay a path for many to follow. Believe in your own abilities. Every single day you have an opportunity to do something amazing — don’t waste it.

P.S. Olga, congratulations!

P.P.S. Meanwhile Samual Coles defended his PhD thesis in Oxford. Grande Sam! Sam, congratulations!

The second visit of Iuliia

By Iuliia:


I have been collaborating with the Electrical Double Layer group from the University of Tartu since the beginning of 2016. I had been to Tartu once, in March’2016, and this August I have visited the group again. During this visit, I was accompanied by Dr. Marco Preto, Researcher in Novelmar Project from Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research of the University of Porto.
The host institution received us very warmly. There was no need to settle any bureaucracy procedures – Estonian efficiency does not cease to amaze me. Everything was taken care of in advance, and we immediately got out a working spaces, keys or anything we could need for work. I think such attitude is very important for these short visits.
In Estonia we spent two wonderful weeks with work and leisure interconnected. Most of the time in Tartu we worked closely with Dr. Vladislav Ivaništšev and his team, where very productive work was carried out, with social activity interludes that recharged us with a relaxed exchange of ideas. During this visit, the work on developing of an approach to an analysis of electrical double layer in ionic liquids systems was conducted, and an article on our previously done work was prepared for submission.
Among all the Master and PhD students, that are being trained at the group, Meeri Lembinen must be acknowledged especially. Meeri, besides being a brilliant student, is a perfect manager. I suspect, due to her care and attention we have not got a single problem at the university and during the whole stay were accompanied by her and felt like at home.
I hope, our fruitful collaboration is to be continued!


Iuliia (left), Meeri (right)