In the last week, we had the labo-visiting days for undergrads. This opportunity is arranged by the department for the students who will be assigned to the laboratories in coming April.
I bought (from my pocket, of course) some snacks and drinks for the visitors to please them ;->. Indeed, our group has several disadvantages to compete with the other strong and attractive laboratories in my department. The most serious issue is that I do not have any lecture course for them, and our group is not involved in the experimental course. Owing to such a situation, for the most of students our group is something unknown. But one of my labo-members told me that the sweets were a sort of relief for him when he visited my group at his occasion, in a sense that the sweets may hint a good group.
We had two days, and had around 20 students in total. On each day, first I made a brief introduction of the group and our research topic rheology, for 30-40 mins. Then I took them to the labo-tour to show the experimental room and student room. Afterwards I tossed the undergrads to the students in our group.
In my policy, it is very important for undergrads to listen from the students in each laboratory for their daily life, which is very different from that they had before getting into the research group. Further, the research life is very much group dependent.
To me, the reaction from the visitors was not bad. I wish to have the students who are interested in rheology and soft-matter things…