Intern Diary: IAS Summer Research Fellowship Programme (SRFP)
Saurav Sahoo | Oct 21, 2019
The Indian Academy of Sciences (IAS), Bangalore invites the application for Summer Research Fellowship Programme (SRFP), offering two months of internship to students and teachers across the nation every year to enable them to work with the eminent scientists and professors associated with the academies. The academies here refer to Indian Academy of Sciences, Bengaluru, Indian National Science Academy, New Delhi and The National Academy of Sciences, Allahabad.
This prestigious internship under its umbrella provides opportunities to BTech and Dual Degree 2nd and 3rd year students, B.Arch 2nd, 3rd, and 4th year students and several other streams including MSc and Integrated Ph.D in the field of Chemistry, Earth and Planetary Sciences, Engineering including Computer Sciences, Life Sciences, Mathematics, and Physics.
The applicant should be pursuing one of the following courses:
- BS / B.Sc / BVSc (II year only)
- BPharm (III and IV years only)
- BE / B.Tech / BCA (II and III years only)
- BArch (II, III and IV years only)
- MS / MSc / MVSc / MPharm (I year only)
- ME / MTech / MCA / MArch (I year only)
- (5-year integrated) MS / M.Sc /M.Tech / MBBS (II, III, IV years only)
- PharmD (III, IV years only)
- (Dual Degree) B.Tech + M.Tech (II, III, IV years only)
- (Dual Degree) BE + MSc (II, III, IV years only)
- (Dual Degree) BS + MS (II, III, IV years only)
- Integrated PhD (I, II years only)
- MSc Tech (I, II years only)
- A teacher must be teaching at a College/University.
- The minimum percentage of average marks in core subjects only (i.e. excluding languages) from standard 10th. up to post-graduation (whichever years completed) should be 65% or above for students. The minimum percentage of average marks does not apply for teachers.
- PhD students are not eligible.
- Applicants who have availed the Academies' fellowship before are not eligible to apply.
It is a paid internship with a monthly stipend of 12500 INR offered by IAS along with all the travel and living expenses being borne by the academy.
TIME OF APPLICATION
The application for SRFP commences around the end of September and lasts till 30 November every year. This year the last date of receipt of application online is 30 November 2019.
The applicants are required to fill the online application form on or before the deadline. The link to the application is available in the websites of three academies (www.ias.ac.in; www.insaindia.res.in; www.nasi.org.in). The applicant needs to fill the form furnishing his/her personal details, educational qualification, and other important information. The following are the documents which are required from the applicants.
Statement of Purpose (SOP): The IAS calls for a short write-up stating the student’s field of interest for a particular research field. Since the word-limit is 150-250, it is essential to wrap up the SOP highlighting the important points and necessary skills that would vividly reflect the passion for research. The content of the SOP should strictly not be a plagiarized one.
Letter of Recommendation: The applicant must provide the contact details of one of the professors of his/her department (not necessarily HOD). The Academy will directly get in touch with the Professor for obtaining the recommendation letter.
Documents: It's mandatory to upload the scanned copies of the marks sheets(in JPEG format, not exceeding 700KB) from class X till the last examination of presently pursuing course. These documents are required to be kept handy before initiating the filling of the application form.
This sums up the entire application process.
N. B. Only one application per candidate will be considered. If more than one application is submitted, none of the applications will be taken into account.
DURATION OF INTERNSHIP
The duration of this internship programme is of a minimum of 56 days lasting for around two months.
All correspondence should be addressed to:
Email: email@example.com Website:www.ias.ac.in
Team Monday Morning got the opportunity to pen down some of the beautiful memories and experiences of interns associated with their internship journey. Here is an excerpt on what they had got to share with us:
“I got to know about SRFP through one of my schoolmates studying in NIT Trichy. My subject interest was kinematics of machines, a course I had in my 3rd sem. To be frank, I didn't have any idea about my particular research interests. I found the subject interesting, so I wanted to learn more and something new on this particular topic. Fields of research can be of your own interests even, not any particular subject in your curriculum. You will get to know about the list of professors who are a part of this programme from the website. You can shape your SOP in a way to target the undergoing research areas under the professor who are a part of this. You cannot choose your profs, or there isn't any particular process for the selection, but a good CGPA is always a plus point.
I worked under Dr Swarup Bag of Mechanical department, IIT Guwahati. My topic was different from my SOP. My project was about “Optimisation using a Metaheuristic algorithm, Harmony Search Algorithm”. I had no idea about the topic prior to it, but learning about it and implementation wasn't a problem. The guide and the Mtech, PhD scholars under him are always ready to help you with any sort of problems related to academics or something else. They are very friendly and teach you various new things. You get access to various labs, instruments and learn about the different projects under the professor. You get exposed to a new environment, make new friends which help in the overall development of yourself. You are just expected to learn how the research is done, not publish a paper in just 56days. If you want to get in the line of research in your future, this sets the right platform for it. Overall experience was great. This internship is prestigious and would certainly help in your future.”
If you want to pursue research in your future, an opportunity like this shouldn't be missed. In India, this is one of the prestigious fellowship programmes. It sets a great platform for your future. Even if, you don't know what to do in your future, have no particular idea but are interested in your academics and want to learn, the opportunities like this would help you to get a clear idea. For the students who mail various professors across the country, I always insist you try your luck with this programme. A decent stipend of 12.5k per month would help you to meet your daily expenses during your stay.
2. AMLAN ARMAN (4th year, Department of Life Science)
Journey and Experience: “My SOP was all about my previous internship experiences and what expectations I had from the internship that I would be doing. The SOP should vividly describe your passion for research and should show them how much this internship means to you. I had 2 internships prior to this and that's where I came to know about the various fields of research and the scope of each field in the long run.
I got fellowship under IAS and worked at CSIR-National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow under Dr Prabodh Kumar Trivedi. The topic of my research was “Understanding the regulatory mechanism of Arabidopsis thaliana GolS1 gene under Abiotic Stress”. It was a great learning experience and the lab members were the friendliest of all the colleagues that I have worked with. It was very hectic as I had to work for 8-10 hrs a day but the lab members never made me feel the tiredness. They made me feel like it was a home away from my home. Apart from the lab, the campus of the Institute is one of the most beautiful ones. The campus is Asia's 3rd largest botanical Garden in terms of species diversity and just walking there would give relaxation and peace to the body.”
Take chances. There is a vast range of opportunities around you, grab those and make the most out of it. Apart from learning stuff, make as many contacts as you can during your internship which will surely help you out in the future.
“I got to know about this programme from my seniors as well as from the Internet. I had also applied for this internship in my third year but that time I didn’t have sufficient enthusiasm and research experience. Unfortunately, I didn’t get through it for the first time. Later I properly researched about it and applied for the same. In my third year, I did an internship at the Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics (SINP), Kolkata. Gradually, I developed enthusiasm about it and later I was able to write a good SOP. The professor under whom I was working from 2nd year also provided me with a recommendation letter. Initially, I wasn’t expecting that I would get selected for this since my CGPA isn’t that much high, but finally, I was selected for this prestigious internship. Generally, the professors associated with IAS are looking forward to the interns who have the inclination to their own field of research. So it is better to go for an SOP mentioning the field that is most sought after by the professors. Otherwise, it completely depends on your luck.
My topic of research at IIT Kharagpur was “Formation of Transition metal nanoclusters through bovine serum albumin protein”. It was to my surprise that I got to work on a field that was completely different from what I mentioned in my SOP. The working environment at IIT Kharagpur was very nice. The labmates and professor were very helpful.”
Try to go through different publications and journals and make up your mind on the field that you are actually interested in. After that, you are good to go.