This week I started the new year with a trip to Leeds and attended my first ever academic conference, the Volcanic and Magmatic Studies Group (VMSG) Annual Meeting, which this year was held at the Leeds City Museum. The conference is a chance for researchers from the volcanology community from all over the UK and beyond to come together and present their research. Throughout the 3 days there was a series of talks about all aspects of volcanology and igneous petrology where people shared the cutting-edge research they’ve been doing. It was fascinating to hear about all the exciting work that goes on at the forefront of the science. There were also poster sessions, where people summarise their work on an A0 poster and have the opportunity to discuss it with others. It’s also an opportunity for networking with others in the community with drinks receptions and a 3 course conference dinner.
I presented a poster showing the work that I’ve done so far on my MGeol Project. Beforehand this seemed like an incredibly daunting prospect, I was worried that people would ask me difficult questions that I couldn’t answer. However, in the end it turned out to be fine and everyone was really friendly and interested in my project. I really enjoyed the opportunity to share my work with others and get practice explaining my work, as well as looking at the wide variety of projects presented by others.
The VMSG is focused towards students and early-career researchers, so lots of the presenters were masters or PhD students, demonstrating that volcanology isn’t just stereotypical old men with beards! The overall conference experience was great, with lots of exciting research being discussed.