To be a reasonable academic "contrarian": a record of Liu Xiaoyue, the winner of the 2021 Baosteel Outstanding Student Award

发布时间:2022-01-30  字体大小T|T
       Liu Xiaoyue is a 2020 doctoral student in climatology at the College of Atmospheric Sciences of Lanzhou University, and has won the Baosteel Outstanding Student Award (2021), the National Scholarship for Doctoral Students of the Ministry of Education (2021), the first-class doctoral scholarship of Lanzhou University (2020), and the Lanzhou University Excellent Postgraduate Student Award(2020) , the title of Outstanding Volunteer for Epidemic Prevention of the College of Atmospheric Sciences (2020), First Prize Scholarship for Master Students of Lanzhou University (2018, 2019), Second Prize of the 6th Postgraduate English Speech Invitational Competition in Northwest China (2019), The first prize of the 3rd Postgraduate English Speech Contest of Lanzhou University (2019), Merit graduate students of Lanzhou University (2019). He has got CET-4 628, CET-6 634, and TOEFL 109. In April 2021, Environmental Research published a paper on the COVID-19 epidemic completed by Liu Xiaoyue as the first author: The role of seasonality in the spread of COVID-19 pandemic. In just 5 months, the work has been cited more than 30 times by authoritative journals including Nature Medicine, selected as a highly cited paper in Web of Science, cited 41 times on Google Scholar, and reprinted more than 200 times on Twitter, Facebook and other social networking sites.
       'Lanzhou University is located in the west, and the spirit of persevering and striving for self-improvement and uniqueness has always been passed down.' Liu Xiaoyue has been on the campus of Lanzhou University for the first time since 2014, and it has been 7 years since he studied for a doctorate. So far, Liu Xiaoyue has been using the email account uniformly issued by the school during his undergraduate days as his frequently used email account. 'I used this account to contact the teachers during my undergraduate days, and I formed a habit and I have been using it all the time.' Although in 2018, he changed his status from an undergraduate to a master's student. In 2020, he became a doctoral student. The school provided him with a new email address, but Liu Xiaoyue kept using the old email address. The old mailbox records his scientific research along the way, his original intention has not changed, and his love remains the same.
Interest + curiosity = love
       Liu Xiaoyue studied at the College of Atmospheric Science at Lanzhou University for both undergraduate, master and doctoral degrees. His 'indissoluble bond' with atmospheric science has to be talked about since childhood.
       12121 is the weather consultation hotline of the Bureau of Meteorology and Liu Xiaoyue's favorite number when he was a child. Liu Xiaoyue had to call and ask about the weather conditions in the morning, noon and evening. Every time I made a call, it cost 3 yuan, three times a day, and soon the landline at home would be shut down in arrears. 'My parents went to the telecommunications bureau to check the bill, and found that all the calls were made by me to the meteorological bureau.' Liu Xiaoyue smiled embarrassedly.
       When I was in elementary school, there was a rare dusty weather in Wuhan, which was often cloudy and rainy, and the sky was full of yellow sand. The extreme weather left a deep impression on Liu Xiaoyue, and also planted the seeds of exploring the mysteries of natural weather in his heart.
       'One time in high school, the sky was completely yellow to make it very difficult to breathe. At that time, I was very curious about the reason. There were all kinds of rumors on the Internet: smog, sand dust, chlorine gas leakage, etc.' But later in the professional study, Liu Xiaoyue checked the weather situation and satellite cloud images at the time, and found that farmers burned untreated straw, and a large amount of toxic and harmful substances were spread into the atmosphere. Under certain meteorological conditions, long-distance transmission of the toxic and harmful substances rapidly reducted air quality and visibility in the surrounding area, and produced a very strong pungent odor.
       At the end of the college entrance examination, Liu Xiaoyue filled in the first item of the Volunteer Form, majoring in Atmospheric Science of Lanzhou University. Unexpectedly, Liu Xiaoyue, who has always loved the weather, was transferred to the pharmacy major, but this unexpected result did not shake Liu Xiaoyue's original intention, and he began to look for opportunities to change his major. Soon, he passed the examination of the atmospheric science base class held during the military training, and successfully entered the coveted atmospheric science major to study.
       Liu Xiaoyue believes that the course at the undergraduate period puts forward higher requirements for autonomous learning ability, and the knowledge described in the classroom needs to be deepened after class. Therefore, every time he finishes one or two classes in the morning, he will use the free time in the morning to go to the library to review, and use the notes in the class as an aid to fully derive the formulas he has learned and clarify the logic. 'A lot of knowledge is acquired by constantly reviewing textbooks while doing homework after class, so the effort after class is very important.'
       After graduating from an undergraduate degree with a passion for atmospheric science, Liu Xiaoyue became a postgraduate student of climatology at the College of Atmospheric Sciences of Lanzhou University as the first-place recommended student. At the same time, he obtained the qualification of Ph.D.
       Joining the research group of Academician Huang Jianping, Liu Xiaoyue experienced the scientific research orientation and rigorous scientific research attitude of serving the needs of the country. The free and lively atmosphere of the team relieves a lot of unnecessary pressure. 'In my impression, Mr. Huang has never lost his temper with us. Even if we have done something wrong, Mr. Huang has always encouraged and guided the students.' Mr. Huang is also very concerned about the lives and the work of the students. He is always the first time to deal with student emails and solve students' confusion.
       Undergraduate study is mainly limited to mastering textbook knowledge. At the postgraduate stage, Liu Xiaoyue learns to internalize knowledge and use critical thinking to reverse the correctness of conclusions. I accepted it unconditionally from the beginning, and I had to first think about why it was like this. I also felt that I was slowly becoming a 'contrarian'.
Put the needs of the country on the first place
       Liu Xiaoyue is a native of Wuhan. At the end of 2019, the COVID-19 epidemic began to spread from Wuhan. Soon, it became a disaster area. Wuhan 'closed the city', more than 20 confirmed cases appeared in Liu Xiaoyue's community, and access was strictly restricted. Being in the center of national epidemic prevention and control, Liu Xiaoyue felt very sad and worried. Under the severe situation, he took the initiative to hand over his 'request letter' - to volunteer in the community.
       This proposal was quickly opposed by his mother. 'The situation was very unclear at the time. There was no vaccine, and there really was nothing.' Even so, Liu Xiaoyue still chose to bravely shoulder the responsibility, and in the absence of vaccine protection, he went against the danger. Carrying and purchasing materials, counting the amount of food, and helping residents pay utility bills are all part of his work.
Liu Xiaoyue carried vegetable supplies while volunteering
       From the end of February until Wuhan lifted the lockdown, Liu Xiaoyue had been sticking to his post as a community volunteer. During this time, a phone call from his mentor Huang Jianping brought him new hope in fighting the epidemic. As a scientific researcher, Huang Jianping hopes to establish a new crown epidemic prediction system like climate prediction, so as to provide scientific prediction and early warning for the development of the global epidemic.
       'I was a little confused when I first heard the news, because I have always been engaged in atmospheric scientific research and have never been exposed to the field of epidemiology.' Liu Xiaoyue faced not only zero-based technical difficulties, but also if taking over this work means that he needs to temporarily abandon the scientific research task that is about to make a breakthrough, and the future work progress and thesis writing will become unknown.
       After a brief hesitation, Liu Xiaoyue made his own choice - immediately threw himself into this new work. Since that day, a laptop has been added to the duty room of community volunteers, and Liu Xiaoyue decided to conduct volunteer service and scientific research work here simultaneously.
       The students who participated in the construction of the covid-19 epidemic prediction system are basically students in the lower grades. There are only seven or eight classmates in total, and no one is fully confident that they can get perfect results. Once called, everyone began to collect various data updated at home and abroad day and night, and constantly tried to adjust.
       In his spare time, Liu Xiaoyue constantly consulted a large number of documents to make up for knowledge gaps. He participated in the teacher's online group meeting every day, reported the progress of his work, and received professional guidance.
       In addition to collecting daily newly confirmed cases, recoveries, and deaths, the team members also collected meteorological data (temperature, air pressure, humidity, wind direction and speed, etc.), environmental data (concentration of pollutants, etc.) and other information. 'Some of these data were published by government agencies, while others needed to be obtained through field site observations and satellite remote sensing.'
       With the enthusiasm and unremitting efforts of the whole team, this work has gradually achieved a breakthrough, and Liu Xiaoyue's hard work has also paid off.
       In May 2020, the Collaborative Innovation Center for Western Ecological Security of Lanzhou University released the 'Global New Coronary Pneumonia Epidemic Prediction System'. Since the system was launched for more than a year, the prediction system established based on the 'statistics-dynamics' method in the atmospheric field has provided an important scientific basis for epidemic prevention and control, and has been effectively used in epidemic prediction in Beijing Xinfadi, Zhengzhou, Nanjing, Xiamen, etc. test.
       In June 2021, Huang Jianping directed Liu Xiaoyue and several other team members to jointly publish an online publication entitled 'The oscillation-outbreaks characteristic of the COVID-19' in the National Science Review. The latest results of the '19 pandemic' reveal that the upward mutation in the oscillation is the main feature of the global spread of the new coronary pneumonia epidemic. The successive oscillations are mainly affected by seasonal changes and lag in case reporting, while short-term mutations are mainly caused by the gathering of people. This result provides an important theoretical basis for the scientific modeling and parameterization of the global covid-19 epidemic.
       When the epidemic was over, Liu Xiaoyue received two heavy 'gifts': the 'Voluntary Service Commemorative Certificate for Epidemic Prevention and Anti-epidemic' issued by the New Coronary Pneumonia Epidemic Prevention and Control Headquarters of Wuchang District. The Donglong community he served sent a letter of thanks to the Party Committee of the College of Atmospheric Sciences of Lanzhou University, and the past few months resurfaced.
       Seeing Wuhan after the 'restart', Liu Xiaoyue sighed from the bottom of his heart that everything he had experienced before was worth it.
Climb the peak on the road of scientific research
       In the early days of the epidemic, there was controversy in the academic community on the issue of 'how meteorological factors affect the spread and development of the Covid-19 epidemic'. Some studies have found that the survival time of SARS-CoV-2 (virus) outside the body decreases to a certain extent as the ambient temperature increases. This conclusion has sparked public speculation that after the arrival of summer, the Covid-19 epidemic will be suppressed to a certain extent.
       As a doctoral student majoring in climatology, Liu Xiaoyue is skeptical of this view: 'Laboratory studies only discuss how long the virus survives in vitro under specific environmental conditions, but the factors that affect the development of the epidemic are not only the ambient temperature and the in vitro activity of the virus, but also includes factors such as the proportion of herd immunity, the frequency and size of crowd gatherings, and the implementation of control measures.”
       He believes that the superposition effect of these complex factors is what really affects the final trend of the epidemic. In order to verify his hypothesis, Liu Xiaoyue began to try to combine the EEMD (Ensemble Empirical Mode Decomposition, Ensemble Empirical Mode Decomposition) method commonly used in climatology with the infectious disease model from the perspective of atmospheric science to isolate the impact of seasonal changes on the spread of the epidemic.
       After repeated attempts, simulations, and verifications, the model he established finally completely reproduced the development of the global epidemic in the past year. The model results show that seasonal changes can indeed affect the development of the epidemic to a certain extent, but the degree of influence is not enough to allow the epidemic to be controlled without control measures.
       In April 2021, Environmental Research published this paper by Liu Xiaoyue as the first author on the seasonal response to the COVID-19 epidemic. Through model and statistical analysis, this study pointed out that changes in meteorological and environmental factors caused by seasonal changes and the complex interactions between them can affect the survival of the virus in vitro on the one hand, and the immunity and social interaction of the human body on the other hand. The study found that COVID-19 outbreaks in high latitudes are more susceptible to seasonal changes.
       The scientific research during the epidemic gave Liu Xiaoyue a new understanding of scientific research and paper writing, and gradually summed up his own set of scientific research methods.
       Liu Xiaoyue is currently engaged in research on oxygen concentration. He regularly debugs observation equipment with engineers, controls quality of data, eliminates outliers, supplements default values, and corrects system deviations. At the same time, reading a lot of literature is his 'routine'. In the research, Liu Xiaoyue obtained a large amount of data from actual observations, but due to the lack of domestic and foreign literature, he did not know how to deal with the data.
       After 3 months of 'torture', he finally extracted key information from a pile of irregular data. 'I want to make my own contribution to improving the livability of cities and taking the lead in achieving 'carbon neutrality'.' In the process of discovering problems, making conjectures, putting them into practice, drawing conclusions, and filling in gaps, the sense of responsibility has always been a strong inner driving force of Liu Xiaoyue that encourages Liu Xiaoyue to explore to the end.
       In the morning, reviewing literature and inputting knowledge; in the afternoon, paper writing and data sorting have become Liu Xiaoyue's daily schedule. He can also always gain a sense of breakthrough in broadening the boundaries of his thinking in scientific research, and his thirst for knowledge and curiosity are also satisfied.
The picture shows the progress record and planning of Liu Xiaoyue's scientific research
Do what you want, add something to your life

       All along, Liu Xiaoyue takes scientific research as his main business, and actively cultivates his various hobbies to enrich his extracurricular life.
       When he was an undergraduate, Liu Xiaoyue became a member of the Propaganda Department of the Student Union of the college. When he first joined the club, for him who had never been in contact with PS, the sudden task of designing posters was a huge change. Liu Xiaoyue humbly asked experienced seniors for advice, and gradually mastered the basic skills of PS in the process of modifying for many times.
       Inadvertently, Liu Xiaoyue received a delayed surprise when Liu Xiaoyue started to get in touch with scientific research. 'When writing papers, we often use intuitive charts to summarize the impact mechanism behind a phenomenon. These charts need to be made with professional graphics software such as PS.' This skill, which once seemed to have nothing to do with Liu Xiaoyue's major, came into play unexpectedly. Its role has become a bonus item in scientific research work.
Huang and Liu et al., NSR, 2021
       In addition, Liu Xiaoyue also actively joined the foreign language department of the school's radio station to report the latest information to everyone. In the face of new things, Liu Xiaoyue has always adhered to the principle of 'do what you want to do'. He firmly believes that every step taken in 'brave attempt' and 'experience with heart' will have a unique meaning in life.
       Talking about the 'secrets of entry' for learning English, Liu Xiaoyue concluded: 'Interest is the best teacher, and having a good enlightenment teacher is also the beginning of interest cultivation.' In junior high school, he was attracted by the English teacher's teaching style, and Liu Xiaoyue gradually liked English.Now Liu Xiaoyue still insists on learning English on a daily basis: when watching American and British dramas in his spare time, he does not forget to record the good sentences when he is immersed in the plot; when browsing English literature, he excerpts professional words and refined sentences to use by himself.
       At the same time, Liu Xiaoyue also pays great attention to the improvement of English expression ability. He believes that to practice oral English well, you need to 'do the opposite'. The key is to practice English listening well, standardize the standard pronunciation in the process of listening, establish the correct pitch in your mind, and then practice oral fluency. He often randomly records his views on a certain issue, and compares his English pronunciation with the standard pronunciation again and again to find the gap. 'This is the result of accumulation.' In 2019, Liu Xiaoyue won the first prize of the 3rd Postgraduate English Speech Contest of Lanzhou University and the 2nd prize of the 6th Postgraduate English Speech Invitational Competition in Northwest China. Currently serves as a part-time English editor of 'China Knowledge Network'.
       At Lanzhou University, you can also see Liu Xiaoyue at various parties. He has served as the host of Lanzhou University's graduate students' New Year's Day party for many times. His solid language skills and unique hosting style make him stand out on the stage. For Liu Xiaoyue, the experience of hosting is not only a supplement to daily scientific research life, but also a shortcut to broadening horizons and making close friends.
       Through hosting, Liu Xiaoyue got acquainted with students from different colleges such as grass industry, medicine, law, and physics. They are not only objects to talk to each other about their emotions, but also partners to learn from each other. 'Our 'roundtable' friends always get together at the same time. Students major in Law go to law firms for internships, and they will chat with us about some interesting cases; students major in medicine also often give us some professional health science knowledge. Everyone progresses and grows together.”
       Talking about future plans, Liu Xiaoyue said: 'If possible, I hope to continue on the road of scientific research, and I hope to create greater value for the society through my own efforts.' This energetic, polite and humble boy will continue to devote full enthusiasm and fighting spirit to scientific research, ignite the unknown with curiosity, and open up the future with faith.