Liyan at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VUA), the Netherlands

Our ESR Liyan Xie spent her second secondment at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VUA). She performed a full factorial experiment of exposing Folsomia candida, and analyzed the data collected from the previous secondment at ECT. At VUA, she cooperated with other of our ESRs, Saúl Monteiro Fernandes (ESR11) and Diana Ilyaskina (ESR6). You can read her experiences in this short report.

January 2023 News

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Two years ago, I did my internship as a master student at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. I found that department had a good vibe, people shared their research topics quite often. Even though those are different field from mine, I felt intrigued and sometimes inspired to my own research. This time, I was back as a visiting PhD student and I very looked forward to it.

With agreement between supervisors, I would perform a full factorial experiment of exposing Folsomia candida to combination of drought and teflubenzuron (Fig 1). It was not hard for me to do such experiment because I was experienced and familiar with the “new” environment. With the help of Saúl (ESR11), the experiment went very well. In return to his favor, I helped with his experiment from time to time. In the meantime, we knew more specific in what we were doing in our own PhD projects.

Figure 1. Top left: Liyan worked in the lab. Bottom left: Liyan worked very concentrated in the lab. Right: “Springtail express”.

Working with other ESRs side by side was a very good experience both at the lab and the office. Together with Saúl, we analyzed the data we collected from ECT (the experiments we did in ECT Oekotoxikologie GmbH a few months before) and brainstormed ideas about writing papers. Diana Ilyaskina (ESR 6) came to the office from time to time and she shared knowledge in “-omics” from her research in PRORISK.

During my stay at VUA, I was able to join Professor Kees van Gestel’s retirement farewell party, such an honor (Fig 2). That was a party full of joy and memories. It gave me a good opportunity to reflect on being a researcher and think of my future career.

Figure 8. The day we found a time to take a picture together (Left to right: Saúl, Professor Van Gestel, Liyan).

At the last day at VUA, I joined an event at the university with other PhD students (Fig 3). In my free time, I visited my friends who are living in the Netherlands and I enjoyed it very much.

Figure 3. Last day at the department. We were having fun and mussels meal.

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