Be ready for surprises!
Interview with Andrés Ávila Barrera, visiting professor from the Universidad de la Frontera, Chile and Director of its Center for Modeling and Scientific Computing
What did you learn from the event today?
It is very interesting to hear from real-life experience about independent projects, developments or technology that some people can do. I think a lot of people are afraid of taking risks: sometimes you win, and sometimes you lose. Cord Stähler showed that you really can be successful, and that it may not be as complicated as you think.
How do you think MINTERFACE can help students?
I think that the disciplines working together is something that we haven’t seen very often in the past. Students study a special programme focusing in one area. Universities often take a long time to respond with curricula and infrastructure to what is happening right now. There is an explosion of new needs, new careers. MINTERFACE is a simple way to connect students and to help them adapt quickly to the situation we have now.
What exactly do they need to adapt to today?
Having your own knowledge today is not enough. Nowadays, there are a lot of problems that don’t require a perfect expert: You need people who can think and who can work in a team. Usually, students try to find a company that does something particular in their field. But inside many companies there are many different things to do. Be ready for surprises!
I think this programme shows the need for collaboration. And if students take it seriously, they can help to grow the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) community in the university too, and they can really get prepared for so-called real life.