Improving education in the field of natural sciences and engineering for technical safety is one of BAM’s key ambitions. BAM encourages its staff to commit themselves to teaching for the benefit of many people.
Many experts from the Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM) will be teaching at universities, universities of applied sciences and technical colleges in the 2018 winter term. Currently, about 50 experts with a scientific or engineering background are involved in teaching.
BAM supports teaching in order to counteract the lack of young professionals in industry and research in natural sciences and engineering disciplines. Many areas such as nuclear transport and disposal technology or chemical safety technology urgently need qualified young professionals. Therefore, personnel must be trained and recruited. Teaching activities help identify particularly good students and, if necessary, motivate candidates to write their final theses or do their Ph.D.s at BAM. Those students who can be attracted to research at BAM will find excellent learning conditions. With its contacts in industry and contracts with excellent social insurance conditions, BAM is particularly attractive for Ph.D. students. Training programmes and work-life balance for Ph.D. students through home offices are other incentives. Students, Ph.D. students and post-docs work in an environment that is up-to-date in terms of technology and methodology. This creates a special attraction and qualifies them for later jobs.
BAM continuously ensures that research practice and teaching are mutually stimulating through joint appointments of leading BAM staff with various universities. Together with universities, BAM now provides 17 professorships. Six junior professorships, seven readers and numerous experts who hold seminars, lectures or courses, provide further input. In addition, BAM experts often act as adjudicators for university final theses or Ph.D. theses. Young scientists are carefully nurtured which is reflected in the quality of their theses: Elisabeth LeClaire und Taarna Studemund from the Thermographic Methods Division were distinguished with the DGZfP Student Prize for 2016 and 2017, respectively – both award winners finished with a grade 1.0.
Teaching provides a great opportunity for experts to pass on their expertise acquired in research practice to the next generation, to network themselves scientifically or to initiate project co-operation. This also enhances the visibility of one's own work area and that of the research facility. External expert committees often consider transregional networking and the combination of research and teaching as quality features in good science.