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Highlights from the first E-Mobility Winter School


Written by
Bevin Anandarajah

Second year BA student Bevin Anandarajah was one of the ULIP participants at the recent Inter-University E-Mobility Winter School and shares the highlights of this engaging and entertaining experience.

"The Inter-University E-Mobility Winter School conference was conceived as an innovative opportunity to enable digital learning experiences across geographic regions and academic institutions, which have been vital to our continued day-to-day working and learning during the Covid-19 pandemic.  

Over the course of three days, around 25 university students of varied disciplines (French studies, International Politics, Engineering and Business Management) from ULIP, ESTIA and Grenoble attended talks, participated in workshops and enjoyed social activities as a means of creating an international network.  

The subject of this inaugural event was the upcoming COP26 scheduled for October this year in Glasgow (postponed from last year). The conference culminated in a pitch event, where groups of students presented the case for various climate actions to a mock panel of UN representatives. Talks from guest speakers, including ULIP's Dr Edouard Morena, were hugely insightful and informative, covering the COP26 conference itself, team and impact entrepreneurship, and management by talking.  

Bevin, ULIP Student, wearing the e-mobility t-shirt

A number of recreational activities were also organised, including an online concert where students from ESTIA and ULIP performed for an evening apéritif, and a live baking demo by a pastry Chef from Pariès, a well-known Basque speciality pastry shop with locations across the Southwest and in Paris. Students were invited to make their own “Gateau Basque” (a traditional, wheat-flour based cake from the Northern Basque region of France filled with almond pastry cream) so that we could share a communal breakfast on the final day of the event.  

I worked in collaboration with students from ESTIA and Grenoble to develop and deliver a culture-sharing presentation, where we introduced each other to the traditional food, drink, clothing and sports of our home countries. It was a wonderful chance to work with people I would not otherwise have had a chance to meet during this period of restricted movement, and I’m very grateful to have been able to form these relationships and share this experience with equally passionate and engaged students.  

Pauline Blanchett, Masters student in Urban History and Culture at ULIP said:  

The Winter School was an incredible experience from start to finish. Not only did we have the opportunity to meet and network with two French universities, but we also created a new community within ULIP. My awareness on climate action has strengthened and the event taught me how to look for a more inter-disciplinary approach when trying to tackle climate change as well as working in a team. Did I forget to mention that we also baked enormous rum-filled Basque cakes?

Gigi Williams, first-year ULIP student of BA International Politics with French agreed:  

“The winter climate school was an enriching experience, giving us the opportunity to meet and work with students from all over France. The chance to discuss climate issues with such a diverse group of people gave me a new insight into how to tackle climate change, all whilst having fun.” 

In summary, the Winter School was a hugely engaging and enjoyable experience. I look forward to the next iteration of collaborative events with students from ESTIA, Grenoble (and possibly others!), and I hope ULIP students will be able to benefit from such exchanges for years to come!  

For anyone interested in finding out more about what this experience was like, check out the final presentations delivered at the pitch contest here: