Staff from the Natural Sciences programme (past and present) hosted an event at the University of Bath campus on 15 June 2019 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the programme starting in 1994. Since then, over 1,000 students have graduated with a Natural Sciences degree from the University.
The Vice Chancellor, Professor Ian White FREng, opened the event and met with alumni and their families. The day started with an interactive talk by Dr Paul Snow, Head of Natural Sciences, which explored how the degree has evolved over the years in response to changes in University education, and the number and high quality of its students. Other previous Heads of Programme joined him: Dr Steve Roser, Prof Stuart Reynolds and Prof Ian Williams all reflected on their time in charge of the programme and how they had brought their own improvements to the course.
The degree offers the opportunity to study two or three sciences from the Faculty of Science with a major and minor subject being drawn from the options of biochemistry, biology, chemistry, environmental science, pharmacology and physics. While the BSc is 25 years old, the popular MSci course was introduced in 2008 and now draws the majority of applications.
Over lunch, there was a chance for the younger visitors to visit a bug display and hold creepy crawlies, make a neuron out of pipe cleaners and play games designed to educate about micro plastics. These activities were drawn from the outreach initiatives of the Department of Biology & Biochemistry and the Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies and also reflect some of the themes studied by the current cohort of students.
After lunch, current Natural Sciences students took the alumni and their families on tours of the campus to see how much it had changed. It was agreed that while the campus has seen much recent development, it has retained its attractive landscaping and maintained its welcoming feel.
The day finished with afternoon tea, garden games and of course, birthday cake. Some of the younger visitors insisted on one more chance to feed the ducks at the lake before starting their journey home.
We all thoroughly enjoyed the day. Amazing for me to see how much the campus has developed since 2003 and great for my children to spark their interest in university. They especially enjoyed the bugs! It was clear a lot of effort had been made to make it inclusive for all ages, which we really appreciated. Here's to the next 25 years! — Alethea Seddon, Natural Sciences alumnus