Grace Liu, NPTS ’18

Prague Nuclear Reactor Practicum

I came into the practicum expecting to learn a lot, but I couldn’t imagine how much I would actually learn and how much fun I would have learning it! Having the opportunity to run experiments and operate a nuclear reactor was phenomenal, not only for the chance to say we were able to do such a cool thing, but more importantly for us as policy students to develop a clear understanding of the physics principles behind nuclear nonproliferation issues. For other students considering this practicum…definitely do it! Some students chose to do go into policy in “fear” of a hard science. Especially in a policy field that is as technical as ours, don’t let that fear prevent you from at least learning the basics of nuclear physics! With amazing teachers, the concepts are not too difficult to comprehend, and it will make you a much better nonproliferation expert in the future!

I would like to thank Judy Vishniauskas for coming up with the idea and bringing it to life, to Dr. George Moore for his fantastic class on nuclear reactors and chaperoning us on the trip, Dr. Lubomir Sklenkla for hosting us at his program in Prague, to all the CTU staff for the great lectures and spending the time to explain difficult concepts to non-science students, and to all of the aforementioned people for creating this truly unique and amazing opportunity for us.

“The author, second from the right, with other students in the foyer of the reactor hall. They’re donning the yellow lab coats that all students wear and are also equipped with multiple radiation monitors for their safety.”

Click here to read Grace’s blog on her Prague Practicum Experience

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