How does soil science link to future global challenges? Read this conversation between Harry and Alex, members of the third and second STARS cohort respectively, as they reflect on the first STARS CDT conference held recently. At this key time for STARS, we are at maximum capacity. Students and supervisors were present from all 4 cohorts at the three day conference, attended by around 80 people. It was the culmination of much hard work by the conference committee, students, invited speakers and workshop presenters.