Goodbye Germany

Canada, ESO, European Southern Observatory, germany, Goodbye, International Space University, ISU, Montreal, Munich, science communication, Space Studies Program, SSP, SSP14, Travel

I’ve spent the first half of this year working as a Science Communication intern at the European Southern Observatory (ESO) and it’s sadly my last day in the German state of Bavaria. My time in Munich has completely flown by. I watched the seasons change from icy and dark winter and then springtime blossom, to the summer sun. It’s hard to believe that I’m leaving soon but I’d say the time has passed by in a flash due to my love of the work, city and people I’ve met here.

The flags of ESO’s 15 member states stood tall in the morning, Munich springtime sun this particular day — a Committee Meeting was taking place and the flags are saved for such occasions. I’ve been told that the winter this year was exceptionally mild compared to chilly Munich standards and spring definitely sprung early this year as the city has been in full bloom.

I arrived in Munich on New Years Day and had some incredible opportunities such as visiting the Columbus Control Centre and the stunning Austrian city of Vienna,  but most importantly I learnt first-hand how to communicate cutting-edge astronomical science to the masses and how to do it well.

  The people I’ve met and friends I’ve made have made me feel at home in this new city and I’m looking forward to returning one day, hopefully in the near future. The past 5 months have been an incredible learning curve both personally and professionally — I’ve gained a range of skills and experiences that I believe will better equip me for whatever lies in store for me next.

 Adorable teddy in lederhosen — the perfect leaving present!

Speaking of what’s next… I’m flying to my summer home of Montreal this weekend as I begin work at the International Space University (ISU) Space Studies Program (SSP) 2014. The summer course is an intense 9-week educational immersion into the space industry. I actually was a student of this summer program back in 2012. You can read my blog post on my Florida space camp story here.

This time around though, I’ll be returning as a Teaching Associate for the Human Performance in Space (HPS) Department. I’ll be sure to write a blog post with more details very soon 🙂 For now though, I’m not quite ready to leave Munich, but looking forward to some change.

-Nikita

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