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Physics Summer Opportunities for Second Year Students?

  1. Apr 29, 2016 #1
    I just finished my first year in chemical engineering and I am making the switch to a double major in math/physics next year. I'm going to a mid-sized school in Canada.

    What kind of research opportunities are there for me after I complete my second year next summer? What kind of interships are available? (I would prefer something in the field of physics or math but I would be willing to work at, for example, a bank if I felt the experience might be valuable). Thanks!
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 29, 2016 #2
    At a research university, this is very easy. Of course that's an unpaid internship, but the experience is much more valuable for a scientific career than working at a bank.

    I just read what research they do, find something that's interesting. Then I email the PhD worker(who is to be the person I work for/the supervisor of some sorts) rather than the professor and express my interests. I have been invited and offered a project 2/2.

    Then again, here in Europe there isn't the tradition of competitive summer internships.

    Of course it helps when you have done the coursework at that uni that connects with the nature of the research already. But this summer I am working as a programmer and I did zero programming courses at my current uni.

    So I guess it depends a lot where you are at. Makes it a lot easier/cheaper to have a internship in the town you already live in anyway.
    If you want to code, I guess that's easier to set up than actual experimental work.
  4. May 5, 2016 #3


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    Education Advisor

    Since you are attending a Canadian university, the first places I would check would be the NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Awards (USRA), and the NSERC Experience Awards. Here are the links to the websites:



    The physics or math departments at your school should also have additional information about these programs. I would also check there for any additional internship programs available to undergraduate students.
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