Amber (ESR4) realized her 1st secondment from 27/03/17 to 05/05/17. She left Galway in Ireland to Wageningen in the Netherlands.
Overall the secondment was a very beneficial and enjoyable experience. I feel I achieved a lot that will be useful to my project, but this was only made possible because of the preparation carried out in advance by WUR (organising inductions, purchasing reagents, etc.). The staff that I worked with were friendly and very open to collaboration, as were Natalia Crespo and Tjakko Abee who I was working with closely. The work tasks themselves were not difficult, but the research area was very much outside of my expertise so there was a lot of ‘playing catch up’ in terms of reading around the research area to ensure that experiments were planned out well. However, I was given lots of support so this was never an overbearing problem. Every effort was made to ensure my stay was as enjoyable as possible, both in and outside of work and this is something that I feel is very important. The biggest difficulty I experienced was maintaining a healthy work-life balance as 6 weeks is not long enough to integrate fully in terms of taking up sports/hobbies, so it can be very tempting just to work. However, my colleagues ensured that I was included in lots of social events so this was not a problem in the end. Overall, I would definitely be open to returning to and collaborating with WUR in the future!.