Each year, several students of the Environmental Pollution Management (Ecotoxicology) Program complete an 8-week internship, the so-called “AMEO”. The AMEO is performed either at an external university, governmental or industrial research institute where students learn to apply the competences achieved during their study. In this blog post, Maxime Bonin shares her AMEO experience in RLP Agroscience GmbH, Neustadt an der Weinstraße.
“In the summer of 2022, I had the opportunity to conduct my AMEO internship at RLP Agroscience GmbH in Neustadt an der Weinstraße. The institute focuses on application-oriented research and development in sustainable agriculture. I joined the working group “Environmental behaviour of plant protection products” under the supervision of Dr. Gunnar Fent. On my very first day, I was invited to help replace the coverage foil of the 20 m long wind tunnel construction, used for determining volatilization and deposition of pesticides in semi-field studies. While being covered in dust and digging a 30 cm deep ditch to secure the foil, I got to know my colleagues easily and we had a lot of fun.
During my internship, I participated in laboratory studies on the volatilizing behaviour of herbicides and was determining the volatile fraction of compounds via liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry (LC-MS). In another project, I was involved in the production of a plant strengthening product made of wine residues and tried to enhance its durability. Besides cultivating plants in the greenhouse for several studies, I also participated in herbicide resistance studies on weeds and applied herbicides in an application chamber under strict safety conditions. In general, I met all the working groups at the organisation and was very warmly welcomed by the employees. My working hours were flexible and I had the chance to manage work based on my interests. Every 30 minutes a bus goes off from Neustadt an der Weinstraße main train station to Wine Campus, which shares buildings with RLP Agroscience GmbH. During lunch break, one can go to the Mensa or go for a walk through the vineyards all around the campus.
I recommend everyone, who is interested in the environmental fate and behaviour of plant protection products and want to do internship close to Landau, to contact RLP Agroscience GmbH.”