Phorms Campus Berlin Mitte and Süd – Small particles, big impact
In March 2017, a handful of interested students from Berlin Mitte and Süd travelled to Geneva for a week to learn about nuclear research at the CERN centre. ‘CERN is the Holy Grail for anyone interested in science,’ says Martha Hubski, a maths teacher at the Phorms Campus Berlin Süd. Students from years 10 to 12 could apply for the trip, which took place for the first time this year. Alongside its work in nuclear physics, the Swiss research institute is also interested in existential questions such as ‘Where do we come from?’, ‘How is the universe assembled?’ and ‘What happened during the Big Bang?’ On the first day, the students visited two exhibitions at the CERN centre, which presented the researchers’ work in a tangible form. ‘At CERN, they put a lot of effort into making their research transparent and comprehensible for the public,’ asserts Hubski.
After the visits, the students reflected on everything they had seen in a workshop. ‘It’s especially interesting to see what goes on behind the scenes. Normally you can only read about the findings in articles, but we got to see how they find these things out in the first place,’ says Richard, year 10. His classmate Melena felt the same: ‘I would definitely recommend the trip to CERN. It’s a great opportunity to engage with educational topics outside of school.’ In addition, the students went on a tour of the UN Office in Geneva, visited the Natural History Museum and ate Swiss fondue for the first time.