[Image above] Participants in the 2014 summer school. Credit: ICG

More than 50 students from 14 different countries gathered at L’Université de Montpellier (France) in early July for the 6th International Summer School hosted by the International Commission on Glass (ICG).

Lectures on key glass properties such as structure and chemistry kicked off the 2014 session, with individual presentations by each student on their primary interests in glass. According to organizers, the evening reception on day one was a great chance for participants to interact and got everyone talking.

For the balance of the weeks studies, organizers offered two separate “streams” (tracks) tailored to the students’ interests. Stream one focused on glass science, covering a thermodynamic approach to structure-property relationships and diffraction methods. Stream two drilled down on glass melting from industrial and academic viewpoints, with students talking innovation, batch composition, and redox chemistry.

While the days were busy with study and discussion, the evenings were filled with fun.

“No evening meal was organized but a large group of students and lecturers discovered independently a restaurant in town with a television. This featured the fateful Germany vs. Brazil World Cup football match. The excitement among the German speakers was tangible as their side’s goal tally mounted, but a certain level of decorum had to be maintained as the restaurant owner and the waitress were both Brazilian!”

Students had several opportunities during these social gatherings to speak with ICG officials, including honorary president Fabio Nicoletti and president Shou Peng.

To conclude the week, participants presented their projects to a panel of judges, who selected the top three presentations. Each winner took home a copy of the second edition of the Making Glass Better textbook, edited by summer school profs Klaus Bange, Alicia Durán, and John M. Parker.

Organizers say that analysis during the summer session and a post-conference survey shows that the program was a great success, and already are making plans for next year’s program, which will run July 6-10.

For more information on the summer school or the ICG, click here.