A new summer school teaches students the elements of the raw materials value chain

The RawDTrip summer school brought together young people and experts in the mining field in Krakow – an important mining area of ESEE region. Taking place in September 2019, the summer school offered to master and bachelor students a unique opportunity to acquaint themselves with various elements of the raw materials value chain: from mining through to processing and product use to the production of waste, recycling and reuse. The summer school was based on copper ore as the basic raw material in high-tech. From over 80 applications, 40 master’s students from 11 RIS countries were selected to take part in the programme.

After the theoretical introduction, five days of the summer school took place in Lower Silesia – a significant mining region. Participants had the chance to visit places at various stages of copper production – in plants owned by KGHM Polska Miedź S.A. – from mining excavations to the smelter and post-flotation tailings pond, to the places where they were reclaimed and revitalised. The second week, in Krakow, was an opportunity to get acquainted with copper products and aspects of copper waste management. The programme combined a complex set of skills, from in-depth technical knowledge about the copper production value chain through to a business and market analysis, taught through several Social Licence to Operate challenges.


RawDTrip was envisioned and developed by Natalia Kowalska, a research assistant and PhD candidate at AGH Krakow. Natalia’s previous experience as a participant in the EIT RawMaterials supported project “TOP Stars PhD Winter School” as well as the InnoEnergy PhD School, and the strong support of the consortium partners, equipped her with the tools to design and lead a successful summer school programme.

The overall positive impact for the members of the ESEE Education group can be described as an increased understanding of the ESEE country-specific education differences and challenges and insight into the whole education processes in the ESEE regionWe learn a lot about each other. 

Sibila Borojević Šoštarić, Associate Professor, Faculty of Mining, Geology and Petroleum Engineering, University of Zagreb

RawDTrip was one of the best scientific events for students I have attended. Natalia, a great organiser with brilliant leadership skills and a great soul! 

Dejan Bajić, RawDTrip 2019 participant