The competition was launched in February 2023 culminating with a Celebration Day with presentations given by the participating teams to The Aegis Professors, The Faculty of Science Dean and Research Director as well as many academics from the five Schools. Read on to find out what the students got up to during the competition.
APUC Launch – February 2023
On 8 February we launched the competition at an event hosted within Geographical Sciences. The event outlined the purpose of the competition and what the Aegis Professor Scheme is. Professor Andy Humphris presented his career journey and an introduction to his challenge. We also introduced the Bristol PLUS award to the students and how this competition can count toward this award. Finally, we finished with a questions and answers session some of which can be found on our FAQ page.
Team Mingle – March 2023
We had a fantastic response to the launch of the competition with 50 students from The Faculty of Science initially registering!
To kick-start the competition, the students organised an informal Team mingle event on 23 March. Supplied with donuts, the Teams heard a little more about the competition and got to work on a mini-challenge to test and develop the ultimate marble slide using paper, tape and spaghetti!
Eden Simkins, President of Chaos, led the mingle fantastically!
Half-Day of Training – June 2023
On 5 June we welcomed our teams to attend an interactive afternoon training session to equip them with tools and resources that will develop their team working skills and deliver well thought-through, compelling ideas and potential solutions to the competition challenges. The session was run by Associate Professor Dave Jarman from the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and covered a wide array topics including:
- Working successfully in teams
- Starting points for ideas
- Evaluating and developing ideas
- Market readiness and what do you need to include in a business plan?
- Formative pitch
The teams took part in a number of interactive exercises such as thinking about their Team canvas, discovering what Tuckman Stages are and planning for these as their team matures, and generating problem statements. It was a lively session fuelled with coffee and cake.
Celebration Day – September 2023
Congratulations to all the students that took part in our first Aegis Professor UG competition, you were all winners.
Lots of demanding work went into the event. Thanks to everyone who helped the Science Partnership Office to make the day a success, starting with the Aegis Professors of course, who brought interesting scientific challenges to the event and also provided inspiring “experience” prizes for all the winning teams – we’re looking forward to hearing about those when the students return.
We could not have pulled this off without our amazing students. Thanks to all of those who took part and a special thanks to the students and society reps who joined our student reference team and helped to shape the competition and spread the word to fellow students. The £5K prize was provided by the Faculty of Science – a big thank you to the Dean and the Faculty Manager for believing in our vision and providing the funding.
Six teams presented to a panel consisting of five Aegis Professors and an audience including fellow students, the Dean, Faculty Research Director and Faculty Business Fellow. A display of the teams’ posters, summarising their challenge and solutions, was available to view throughout the event, inspiring a lot of comment and discussion.
After some tough decision making, the panel were delighted to declare that the overall winners were Team 1 – Dana Alismail (Earth Sciences), Lumi Long (Maths), Ruby Page, Weronika Stelmach and William Terry-Wright (all Chemistry). Their excellent teamwork, lively presentation and eye-catching poster all combined to win them the top prize of £5000, as well as a tour of the haptic and hand tracking tech company Ultraleap.
Weronika described the competition as ‘a great opportunity to apply my scientific skill set in a new creative environment, to a task which was associated with a real-world problem. Developing our ideas alongside the Aegis professors provided insight into the feasibility of our app and our approach. The coaching sessions with the Aegis Professors gave perspective, and personal stories on how science meets industry.’
The panel were hugely impressed with all the teams as research, presentations and posters were of a remarkably high quality. There was a great positive vibe to the event, and it was wonderful to see how students from all our Schools (Physics, Chemistry, Maths, Geographical Sciences and Earth Sciences) worked together so well.
Click here for a summary of all the teams and their projects.