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Programs Internship essay for CERN -- Please help

So i'm applying to the REU through university of Michigan to attend CERN this summer. This is like my DREAM to be at CERN. i just finished writing my essay and I want as much feedback as possible, i really want to get this internship.

Please write a single paragraph describing why you would like to do research at CERN this summer:

I’ve always been challenged by my peers. Despite my high academic level, I’ve constantly felt subordinate to my classmates. As I grew up, it became apparent that this sense of inferiority came from the fact that I was different from others. I am a first-generation Mexican with dreams to become a successful scientist but coming from an immigrant neighborhood, Hispanics are typically viewed as people who are meant to do manual labor or acquire a job that does not require higher education. It is seen as taboo for a Hispanic to have ambition.Today’s socio-political discrepancies on the Latino/Hispanic community have also contributed to the struggle; however, the hostility towards my people and the competition towards success is what I thrive on. I can safely say that studying physics is mentally demanding that not many people have the determination to study this complex discipline. As one of the very few Hispanic women in physics, I know that I am capable of breaking through the glass ceiling and succeeding like any other person in this field. have the curiosity and tenacity essential to reveal the beauty of nature. My knowledge in computer science, physics and as well as my trilingual abilities will be beneficial for problem solving. Working in a multi-ethnic environment of highly skilled scientists will guide me to obtain the skills necessary to become an extraordinary physicist in the future. It’s been a dream of mine since high school to be a part of the community that discovered the latest fundamental particle. I believe that doing research at CERN will exemplify my intrinsic motivation as well as broaden my understanding of the physical world in aspirations to produce successful outcomes for the greater good.

Vanadium 50

Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Education Advisor
Look at the question they asked.

Does the first sentence address it?
What about the second?
How about the third?

Get the point?
Don't do that. At all.
This is the impression I get from your text: "You should accept me because I'm a Hispanic woman, if you don't I'll consider a lawsuit for discrimination."

You can bring up your background, but keep it short - don't make it the defining element of the whole text. You want to be accepted because you are a good future physicist not because you come from Mexico. Why you want to work at CERN is way too short.
It’s been a dream of mine since high school to be a part of the community that discovered the latest fundamental particle.
If that refers to the Higgs boson you are too late. Particle physics is much more than finding new fundamental particles, by the way. Did you see a previous project that you found particularly interesting, for example?

Minor points:
I can safely say that studying physics is mentally demanding that not many people have the determination to study this complex discipline.
What do you want to say? "Most other candidates are bad"? I would skip the second part (and probably the first one, too).
trilingual abilities
You can list the languages in brackets. Spanish and English plus one more I guess? CERN has English (physics, accelerators) and French (canteen, some engineering, housekeeping and stuff).


Science Advisor
Homework Helper
Gold Member
+1 to what others have said.

You need to concentrate more on answering the question.

Why research? Why CERN? Why this summer?


Science Advisor
Insights Author
I agree totally with the rest, and especially Vanadium. Please don't draw the "I'm from a minority group"-card. If you ask me: It's ridiculous. Sure, also science deals with prejudices, but believing that you have to adjust the reader's point of view on this topic doesn't give you kudo's. I'd be offended.

I also don't read anything about wat kind of topics you want to address in that internship. Sure, it's a dream, but that's not a reason to pick you. If I'm doubting whether I'm using cliches, I always wonder: would I mention it in detail if the opposite would be the case? They expect you to be motivated, so don't spend too much text on that. Spend it on the content.

Hope this helps and good luck :)
Thank you so much for your feedback! This is exactly what I needed actually. Yeah I had a feeling that bringing in my nationality would be a bit much but I figured it might’ve helped just because on the website itself they said they’re looking for minority groups and women. Also, I speak french too, its already written on my other parts of the application, do you think I need to reiterate that when writing? Also on other parts of the application, it tells me to talk about two of their experiments, should I talk about those two as well?
French is nice. If you have it elsewhere you don’t have to talk about it in detail but a short “(English, Spanish, French)” doesn’t harm. There are many applicants, people who read that text won’t necessarily have everything in your application in mind all the time.

If you want to go to CERN because of a specific experiment: Sure, talk about it.


Science Advisor
Gold Member
If I were applying to CERN, I would visit their website and review their mission, goals and needs. I would then tailor my answer to highlight how my skills best address those things while answering the question of why I want to do research there.

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