The University of Southampton

Second year student scoops technical talks award

Published: 11 June 2014

Second year PhD student Kyle Bottrill fought off tough competition from his colleagues at the Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC) to win first place in a technical presentation competition.

All second year PhD students at the ORC are challenged to give a presentation to an audience who then decide the overall winner by voting for their favourite. This year PhD student Kyle got the highest vote for his talk on Visual Prostheses – the application of bionics to provide sight to the blind or visually impaired.

Professor Rob Eason said: “This is an annual event that has been running for more than 10 years and is designed to let students hone their presentation skills in front of an audience of their peers in the ORC to give them practice for when they have to present at conferences or similar events. Each student is set a topic that falls within the broad remit of photonics, but is not aligned with their own particular project direction. The aim, on which they are judged, is to see how well they can research a topic, present their key findings and conclusions, and if they feel strongly enough, try to persuade the organisers that the topic they are presenting is one that the ORC should really incorporate in their current research portfolio.”

Kyle said: “I am delighted to have won the competition. The talks offer a great opportunity to get another presentation under your belt that is potentially quite valuable. It was also beneficial to challenge myself on a topic other than that of my PhD, as I had to familiarise myself with it in a very short time and be able to present it in front of a scientific audience.”

Kyle won £500 to be spent towards a conference, a summer school or lab components for his PhD.

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