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On the metaphysics of internships

  1. Sep 17, 2010 #1
    Hello, I am quite new to all this world of internships so I have some questions to the forum. (I have been in several CTYs, but I am afraid that these programs are way different from an internship.)

    The thing is that I have been searching for internships in the US/Canada, but so far I haven't found any that would agree with my schedule. I study in Germany, and we would normally finish exams in mid-july (this year we finished on 15th July) and we start in October.

    About the program, I'm seeking for something related with particle physics or cosmology (yeah.. I know). For instance the Fermilab, SLAC and other accelerators in the US all start the internship on june or so (hence I can't go...); then there's also the CERN internship: they actually start on 19th July (which would be ok), but it's not that I can rely on just one application –not to mention that it may be really hard to get in there, and it's better not to get my hopes up.

    So I would like to ask you if you know of any internship in Europe for these dates (since it seems impossible to attend to an internship during these dates in North America... even though if you are aware of any, let me know!). It doesn't need to be in an accelerator, of course, if it was some program with just lectures in some University, it would be more than fine! (actually I like lectures and colloquia better than getting into really experimental-like labs).

    About the economical part, I don't really know how it works for internships... I know that some of them even pay you *shrug*. I am in no way looking for getting paid but to just learning new stuff and all. I guess that if they pay you for the trans./stay/food that would be more than enough for me!

    Note: Now that I remember, I must clarify that even though I study in Germany my German level is really rudimentary. About other languages... I guess I could survive in French, but preferably I would take it in English. (For German students I have found http://www.daad.de/rise-programs/en/index.html" is the main website for DAAD internships if you are wondering)

    Any help is appreciated!
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 17, 2010 #2
    At least in the US--since you aren't necessarily looking to be paid--its very possible to get a more unofficial internship: i.e. one that doesn't have specific start end dates.

    I'd recommend contacting (e-mailing) a researcher whose work you are familiar with, send them your CV/resume, and ask if they might have a position for you.

    Also, see if any of your professors (etc) know anyone they can recommend you to.
  4. Sep 18, 2010 #3
    Oh I see, I did not consider that option before. I guess I can ask the professors in my university for a suggestion/recommendation then.

    About internships, are they always in workplaces such as labs, or there are internships more theoretically-based, where you just attend to conferences/lectures?
  5. Sep 18, 2010 #4


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    My adviser had an intern from France last year who spent a semester in our research group. She had contacted him and asked if she could come, and he agreed (we're in the US). She was doing research; she wasn't working in a lab or going to talks, she was doing theory and computational work.
  6. Sep 22, 2010 #5
    Sounds interesting, but the thing is that I am still an undergraduate, so my level of theoretical physics is poor compared to that of a graduate, so I don't know how would I be of any use to a professor doing theoretical research. What are your thoughts? :confused:

    And about my knowledge of programing, it's null. Now that you mentioned computational work, I know how to use Origin and Mathematica (I'm not a master of it!), so I don't know if I would be helpful to any research area right now. Was the girl from France an undergraduate as well?
  7. Sep 22, 2010 #6


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    No, she was a masters student. But she wasn't really being 'useful', she had her own project my adviser was supervising. It was related to his work, but not closely enough to be helpful to him. Definitely talk to your professors. They should have some connections; many schools are open to an unofficial program of some sort if you have someone to help you arrange it.
  8. Sep 22, 2010 #7
    Ah, I see. Then I will ask my professor once I'm back to University.
    Thanks for your input!!
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