The Fate of the Memory Trace: Learning, Remembering, Forgetting
“European Campus of Excellence”: European students pursue research with acclaimed international scientists / Stiftung Mercator supports network’s first summer school at the RUB
We are our memory: without our memory, we would have neither a past nor a future. But how does memory work? Which neuronal structures enable us to remember the birthday of our grandfather or our daughter’s first attempts at walking? And why do we forget some things again? Answers to these and many other questions will be sought by around 30 excellent European students, working together with leading international neuroscientists, at the first summer school of the “European Campus of Excellence” (ECE) network. The summer school will be held at the Ruhr-University Bochum (RUB) from 4 to 25 September 2011, and is supported by Stiftung Mercator. This marks the start of a series of international summer schools that are planned in cooperation with European foundations in various countries. Outstanding students from the European Union, Israel, Turkey, Norway and Switzerland who are pursuing courses of study in different disciplines related to brain research (biology, medicine, psychology, computer studies and cognitive science) have until 15 April to apply for a stipend.
Information about the European Campus of Excellence: http://www.euca-excellence.eu
Overcoming traditional national boundaries
“Support for highly gifted students must be European in orientation and cannot take place solely within traditional national frameworks, as this is the only way to ensure that ‘old Europe’ remains intellectually young and highly competitive”, stresses Professor Gerhard Roth, president of the Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes (German National Academic Foundation) and ECE coordinator. “In supporting this international summer school, it is Stiftung Mercator’s intention to help students acquire international experience despite the restrictive rules and regulations governing their programmes of study. We hope that this European model will become firmly established, thus also making a contribution to better quality teaching”, explains Dr Bernhard Lorentz, president of Stiftung Mercator.
Living, eating and experimenting together
The conditions under which the ECE’s first summer school will be run by Bochum neuroscientist Professor Onur Güntürkün (professor of biopsychology at the Institute for Cognitive Neuroscience) are unique: for three weeks, students and scientists will live and research together in the rooms of the Ruhr-University, exploring the subject of “The Fate of the Memory Trace: Learning, Remembering, Forgetting”. Professor Ray Dolan from the Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging in London is expected to attend the opening ceremony on 4 September 2011. The first week will be devoted to how we learn and store new information. In week two, participants will focus on how our memory is organized, while week three is all about unlearning and forgetting. Mornings will be comprised of lectures, followed by experiment-based lab seminars in the afternoons. On three evenings each week, internationally acclaimed scientists will give in-depth lectures, some of which will be open to the public. Weekend excursions will provide participants with an opportunity to explore the Ruhr region and forge personal contacts for the future. Students selected to attend the summer school will receive a stipend that covers travel and full board expenses.
RUB looks forward to welcoming Europe’s young scientists
“The fact that we have the honour of hosting the first European Campus of Excellence confirms the outstanding international reputation enjoyed by neuroscience at the Ruhr-University. We very much look forward to welcoming Europe’s young scientists to Bochum”, says Professor Güntürkün.
Professor Onur Güntürkün
Faculty of Psychology, Biopsychology Department
phone +49(0)234 – 32 26213
e-mail: onur.guentuerkuen (at) rub.de
Marisa Klasen, Communication Manager Stiftung Mercator
phone +49(0)201-245 22 53
e-mail: marisa.klasen (at) stiftung-mercator.de