Sep 12, 2021|13 minutes
If you are enthusiastic about research and learning about what might impact the future, then pursuing research internships is the best fit for you. A research internship is one wherein you work under a professor, and it becomes a form of academic work experience. These programs are designed for college students, which offer them experience with researchers and potentials for networking opportunities and work experience that is beneficial once they graduate. Most of these programs are performed in real-world situations, providing a better understanding of their future work environment and learning new things. A research intern is responsible for assisting the research team with conducting an investigation, compiling information, and analyzing results for an organized research study.
Unlike company internships, there are no fixed hours, and one can see the implementation of classroom knowledge in such projects. Such internships assist you with choosing if you wish to seek higher studies or work and give you an edge over the ongoing research projects.
If you are eager to become a research intern, you need to consider a few many things. It would be better if you were aware of your interests and chose a topic wisely. Next, find the institutes that offer programs that suit your interest and vice versa. Keep tabs over the application dates and eligibility criteria; further, you might ask seniors who have been interns and get a sound idea.
Next, prepare your academic resumes, and check for other parameters. For instance, certain internships require reference e-mails from an academic research professor or supervisor along with a resume, while specific internships require an SOP. Writing an SOP can sometimes get tricky, as you need to encompass all vital information while keeping in mind that it might provide you with the edge over others. Hence, one must keep in mind these headers and proceed accordingly.
"Misconception #1: Students should choose research projects in their major. While choosing a research project that directly relates to your major may be convenient, students can learn from research in other areas. One can take part in an interdisciplinary project or has your skillset as a pre-requisite, provided you are invested in it.
"Misconception #2: Research is focused a lot on “doing” rather than reading and writing. Research internships are more of hands-on activities involving critical thinking, compiling, and reading aspects of research. In some instances, Data analysis can comprise a large part of the research, but you also need to read related studies. In addition, you have to write an abstract for the project. You might have to learn new software/subject in a concise time frame, design and run simulations, an experiment in the lab to develop an ideology or concept, write a paper for the finished experiment, or even interact with other researchers while doing random tasks linked to your project.
There are several research internships available for university students and working professionals to get involved in. One of the major misconceptions among many people is that applying to a lot of college portals or approaching a lot of professors via mail or LinkedIn means getting selected in these programs, and it could not be more wrong! These internships are one of the best means of testing one’s knowledge, improving it, and helping the community with their research work that serves the entire world. So without further ado, let's take a deep dive into some of these programs.
Students will come to Canada during the period of May to October. Applicants must be available to complete a 12-consecutive week internship (arrival dates must be between May 1st and June 30th, though exceptions can be made for later start dates; departure dates must be between July 31st and October 31st).
One must complete his/her application by September.
Vedant Mohanrao Telrandhe, a final year student from the Department of Chemical Engineering, shares his story about his internship at NUS SINGAPORE.
Since the entire internship was in online mode, facilities like accessing the labs were not available. So, I was given the task of review paper writing on the topic of 3-D bioprinting of human organs. The paperwork included its initial stages, history, the evolution of this field, and its future aspects. I worked under the supervision of Prof. Seeram Ramakrishna. He is one of the most cited professors in this field across the world. So, it was a great experience for me to work under him. Earlier I had done an internship at IIT Hyderabad, so if you compare foreign internships with Indian internships, they expect accuracy, professionalism, and dedication towards your work. Overall, it has increased my credibility, thereby honing my skill set. I would say the experience was diverse despite being conducted in an online mode.
Bibhash Pran Das, a final year student from the Department of Electronics and Instrumentation Engineering, shared his journey of getting selected in UC, Dublin Internship:
I am currently pursuing my internship under the supervision of Dr. Soumyabrata Dev at UC, Dublin, The Vision and Analytics Lab. I am working on Satellite-based remote sensing using Deep Learning. I am trying to estimate the near-surface concentration of nitrogen dioxide using measurements from tropomy satellite made by the European space agency. It is a very knowledgeable experience for me because I get to work with people of high caliber, and also, you get research career guidance from the professor. It taught me how to pursue research with sincerity and dedication, managing time, and developing skills in writing a research paper.
Mrutyunjay Biswal, a final year student from the Department of Electronics and Instrumentation Engineering, shares his journey of getting selected in NTU, Singapore.
The experience was enthralling because you not only get valuable inputs in your research work from your teammates and Ph.D. guides who are of high caliber but also guidance from professors who are having expertise in this domain. As an undergrad, one doesn't have much experience in research and there is no limit to the thoughts that strikes the mind. So, here mentoring comes into the picture, they converge our diverging ideas and guide us to the right experimentations to perform. It helped me develop the thought process while approaching research experiments. Overall, I have been benefitted from the exposure and the diversity of the internship environment.
Under the Students-Undergraduate Research Graduate Excellence (SURGE) program, students from IITK and other participating institutions undertake short duration, but focused research projects and push their intellectual abilities beyond those driven by the classroom. The SURGE participants are required to give a mid-term presentation after four weeks, to a review committee consisting of a group of academic staff members. The review committee gives feedback and suggests possible improvements in the work. At the end of the program, all the SURGE students make a poster presentation of the work carried out at IITK. The poster presentation is open to the public. It is also evaluated by faculty members.
The duration of the program is approximately 10 weeks, and the beginning date of the SURGE program is June 14, and the last date is August 22 tentatively.
The applicants (Non-IITK Indian Student) shall be required to pay the application fee of Rs. 500/-. The details of the application are made available in the last week of January (tentatively). The shortlisted SURGE participants are required to pay the SURGE administrative charges of Rs. 900/-. The entire application and selection procedure takes around 2 months.
SURGE has been a very competitive internship program. The students should have the following items ready before filling the online application form.
Note: There is no fixed format for the recommendation letter under this category, but the letter should be on the NIT Rourkela'sRourkela's letterhead or the respective faculty member's letterhead undersigned by that concerned faculty member who is familiar with your academic work. Surge Office will directly contact the recommenders for verification of recommendation letters.
Siddhartha Nanda, a pre-final year student from the Department of Ceramic Engineering, shares his story about his internship at SURGE IIT Kanpur.
IITK SURGE is a very competitive internship program. First, applicants need to fill-up the form by paying an application fee. Once they get selected, they have to lock their seats. The entire application and selection procedure took around 2 months. Finally, my work started in the 2 nd week of June. I was appointed under Prof Anshu Gaur. My project title was "Determination of orbital overlap integrals for semiconductors and testing the correlation between calculated orbital overlap integral and electron effective mass." Since the internship was online, so all the calculations have been carried out using different software like MATLAB and Mathematica. There are some challenges I had to face.
First, I was doing two internships simultaneously and had our end semester exams for both Autumn and Spring semester in May and June. Hence, it has been a bit hectic for me. The second was working from home in case of research doesn't give you full understanding and exposure to a particular topic. But I had regular meetings with my Mentor, and he has always been very supportive and helped me understand all the concepts. But I still feel, experimental work in the lab is essential for a complete understanding of the research project. However, I was satisfied with my work during both of my internships.
I have spent a lot of time in club activities. I have been the NSS Coordinator, SAC Secretary, and other PORs in my 2nd year. But as soon as I got back home for COVID, I have developed a research interest. I always look forward to my just senior Rishabh Kundu from our department, who has been an avid researcher himself and always supported and motivated me. My life took a turn from there. I started taking an interest in core subjects and explored the field of materials science. When you are interested in research, your academic scores will automatically improve because you will love your subjects. This happened with me as well. In my 3rd year, I left all the posts, and I am only working as a Chair for NITR ICS (Indian Ceramic Society). Also, staying at home gives you enough time to manage all your activities.
I need to tell few things to the readers and mainly to the juniors that don't waste time. One can take time in the first year, get acquainted with the place, make some friends, visit some places, and attend classes properly. As soon as you get into your second year, start exploring various career options; what field you like, and by the 4th / 5th semester, choose your domain and start working on it. This is in general for all the fields. For research, be sure that you have motivation, passion, patience, and commitment. Read scientific articles, research papers, bulletins, etc. For the current situation, learn software like Matlab, Ansys, Solidworks, LAMMPS and get some idea of Machine Learning. Take some courses from NPTEL or Coursera, participate in various technical paper presentation competitions, attend webinars and always look for opportunities. Start working on your CV, approach your department profs for projects and take a reasonable amount of time to write a Statement of Purpose. Also, maintain a good CGPA. All these things need time and hence, start early, and you will get success.
Don't be shy. Make good friends, get motivated by the work of your seniors, and always maintain a good relationship with your professors and approach them for academic help.
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 the 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:
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.
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 2020 which was further extended.
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 that 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 the 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.
The duration of this internship program is a minimum of 56 days lasting for around two months.
Abhipsa Senapati, a final year student from the Department of Biomedical Engineering, shares her success story about the IAS SUMMER RESEARCH FELLOWSHIP PROGRAMME (SRFP).
The application procedure starts in the first week of September. Due to covid, the application procedure was delayed, but I always kept track of the application. Since I have heard a lot about its weightage from my seniors, I really wanted to earn the fellowship. The application consists of a few sections: personal information, academic details, i.e., class 10 - 12 marks, current CGPA, SOP(Statement of Purpose), type of institution you are interested in working in, and many more.
To my observation, the selection procedure is majorly dependent on SOP(Statement of Purpose) and LOR(Letter of Recommendation). The candidates should be more focused on writing a good SOP, including your previous experience, such as your work under any PhD of your department, what you liked about it, what motivates you to take up this internship, and what work you would like to do. LOR is also significant since the Academy directly receives it from the faculty.
There is no such preparation strategy for the internship, but one should try to work under any PhD in any of the labs of his/her interest. There is no interview round, but I was contacted by the company's Co-Founder, who wanted a casual meet over google meet, which was nothing less than an interview because he asked me many questions from the entire SOP I had submitted.
Due to lockdown, the Academy delayed the publication of the results, due to which I had lost hopes to be selected in the fellowship, but by the end of May, the list had my name, but I was not allowed to start internship unless and until I was contacted by the Academy which again by delayed by two weeks. Finally, by the end of June, I started my internship at Sensio Enterprises, Bengaluru. I worked on a signal processing project, which helped me get my hands dirty on various python packages such as scipy, pandas, pydtw, and many more. The internship went smoothly until the classes started; things got very hectic with weekly presentations and standup meetings at the internship.
I would give only one tip and message to be consistent with what they want to achieve and follow a fixed path. In research, experience plays an important role. It will be beneficial if juniors try to indulge themselves in various labs working under Ph.D. scholars. You always get to learn a lot from reading papers and working in the field, best wishes to juniors.
Abhranta Panigrahi, a pre-final year student from the Department of Biomedical Engineering, shares his story about the Research internship in the Machine Learning, ISI Kolkata.
I explored the domain of machine learning during the pandemic. I had a lot of time as there were no classes during the start of the pandemic. So, I started participating in some competitions and read about various concepts from youtube and google. Then I started working in a lab where I did a few works on analyzing biomedical signals. I started participating in hackathons, and I did a few projects of my own.
Then I started writing emails to professors. I was interested in research as my placements in biomedical engineering are practically non-existent. Moreover, I never liked DSA, and I didn't want to do something I didn't like. At this time, I started working under Dr. Manish Okade with a few of my seniors, which gave me some more research experience.
After that, one of my emails got accepted at ISI Kolkata, and I got involved in some projects. These internships don't have a timeline, and the final goal is to do something new to publish a paper.
I am still working on a project there. I don't know when it will be completed, but it is really fun to work with such motivated individuals, and I get to learn a lot from them. The people there are knowledgeable, and I feel like research is an opportunity for people to understand.
I was lucky to become a part of the ML4E club which introduced me to seniors like Mrutyunjay bhaiya and Bibhash bhaiya. They are some of the best mentors in machine learning and are some of the best seniors that I could have asked for. Also, as a part of Cyborg, I came in contact with many seniors who guided me a lot.
If there is one thing that I can tell my juniors, it will be that they don't just do something because someone else is doing it. Don't get pressured by your peers. Try to find something you love and give it your everything. Take the first step towards something you love, and there will be a lot of opportunities that open up. Stick to the thing you are passionate about. If it is a one-day interest, it won't get you anywhere.
IITR SPARK is an internship program aimed to provide research exposure to highly motivated undergraduate students.
Vaibhav Singh, a pre-final year student of the Civil Engineering Department, shares his success story about the IITR SPARK Summer Internship Program.
Students who are currently enrolled and have completed at least two semesters of the undergraduate degree (B.Arch./B.E./B.Tech./M.Sc) in a relevant discipline from any institute in India.
Following minimum CGPA criterion will apply:
You require a resume, Statement of Purpose(SOP), and specific documents. The former two are crucial, as, on that basis, candidates are shortlisted. During the entire pandemic, I was freelancing on different projects in the Geotechnical field, specifically those requiring software to be used and mentioned in SOPs(Statement of Purpose). CGPA criteria are to be taken into account as well. After selection, you have to submit a No Objection Certificate(NOC.). Writing SOPs can be tricky because there are many projects to select, and you have to choose only 5, which can be from different fields. The SOP must comprise 500 words, which is to say, 100 for each project. In addition, you have to write an introduction, how can the internship benefit you, and it must show the person reading it that you are interested in this, which can increase your chances of getting selected.
I knew about the prerequisites as I had contacted a senior who explained the entire process. I began preparing for research-based internships from my 2nd year as I wanted to apply for IITR Sparks. In 3rd year, I applied for an internship at IIT Guwahati, and coincidently I checked for the deadline to apply at IITR Sparks on the last date. Hence I completed the entire procedure in 4 hours and luckily got selected. This included preparing a resume, writing SOPs according to a particular project, and filling in necessary details.
The project I am currently working on is 3 Dimensional consolidation of soil. When a constant force is applied for a prolonged time, the soil settles, and water comes out. The settlement is extensive in fine-grain soil (like clay), and the building settles after a due course. Due to the large size of the area and the settlement being differential, there may be cracks in the foundation, thus affecting the structure. My project is based on installing prefabricated vertical drains to reduce the settlement. The soil is consolidated to 80-90% within two or three months, which should take 2-3 years. We consider different parameters, i.e., the type of flows, check the effects of inserting the pipes, etc.
There is a massive difference in the working environment in an offline and online internship. The working environment in an offline internship is quite conducive. You see like-minded people, researchers, and fellow enthusiasts; however, you might be confused about the next step in an online internship mode as you lack the experience.
The discontinuity in my internship owing to the exams affected its pace. I contacted my guide before the tests stating that I wasn't going to compromise with the End Semester. Hence, I requested a break of 10 days. The supervisor agreed and added that I would have to extend my internship by the number of days I wasn't working on the project.
It is better to be open about your troubles to the supervisor as research requires constant supervision. In addition, if there is a definite time or a deadline to submit a report, and you have to give updates regularly.
You should be clear about your goals. Suppose you want to pursue a career in an industrial or research field; in that case, it is advisable to start preparing from the 4th semester. This will let you have an idea/experience about various aspects of the future areas you will be pursuing. Internships in the 3rd year are crucial, and having previous experience in these fields will be helpful. Internships in the 2nd year can help you figure things out at your own pace. If you are interested in research, it is better to grab an internship in the sophomore year itself, and if you are interested in the industrial field, it's better to work in that direction.
IIT Bhubaneswar offers winter internship programs where candidates from government-funded technical institutions and the students referred by various academies could apply for the program. IIT Bhubaneshwar provides internship programs in the fields related to the schools of basic sciences, Earth, Ocean and Climate Sciences, Electrical Sciences, Infrastructure, Mechanical Sciences, Humanities, Social Sciences and Management, and Minerals, Metallurgical and Materials Engineering.
The internship is for three to four weeks.
The candidates can apply online by visiting the institute’s website.
The application must include:
Sandeep Srinivas, a final year student of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, shares his internship experience in IIT Bhubaneshwar Winter Internship Program.
The entire application process is pretty simple. The application portal opens in mid-October and stays open for a month. The application asks for personal and academic details and also asks for preference of research area. Finally, it asks for a resume, and that’s it. It didn’t ask for any SOP’s(Statement of Purpose) or LOR’s(Letter of Recommendation) back then. I received the offer by the end of November, and upon acceptance, I had to deposit Rs 3000 as caution money which was refundable once the internship ended. The internship usually lasts for four weeks.
I did my research internship at IIT Bhubaneswar in the School of Mechanical Sciences. My area of research was regarding the production and analysis of various metal matrix composites. I was superbly guided throughout the internship by my supervising professor Dr PR Budarapu. This being my first internship experience, I’d say this was a great learning curve for me.
In acquiring research internships, a lot of effort goes into shortlisting professors based on your interests and mailing them. I preferred to shortlist professors, read their research papers on weekends, and mail them on the 1st or 2nd weekdays. I usually get done with my academics and club work on the weekdays, so weekends are pretty much vacant.
As I was in the 2nd year, I didn’t have any projects or work experience on my CV, but in my opinion, good academics can compensate for those shortcomings. Having good grades gives you an upper hand during these four years and even further. Also, the application didn’t explicitly ask for any SOP, but I added a brief SOP in my CV to make it more detailed about myself. Also, it can make up for the lack of projects. So, always keep SOP’s ready beforehand because other internships do ask for them. Also, SOP writing requires special attention and to make it better, peer review of SOP is a critical aspect.
There are some basic points that you need to follow especially if you are going for cold mailing.
At the core of most examination internships is your very own exploration task. While dealing with it, you learn new scientific techniques, plan tests, analyze and infer results, and formulate the various hypotheses. You work intimately with an administrator or a teacher who guides you. You will work closely with researchers and will get an opportunity to show your logical understanding and scientific aptitude. Most universities or research organizations offer such internships as a type of work experience.
DISCLAIMER: The content, opinions or views expressed on the Monday Morning website and its social media platforms, including, but not limited to Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages, are strictly the property of Monday Morning and represent the extensive research and work of the working team of respective academic year of Monday Morning and not those of the institute. The reports and statements published are consolidated from the collected background research and interviews. The official statements of the institute can be found in the press releases published by the institute or via an RTI application.
No article or any statements by Monday Morning is to be reproduced, presented or distributed in part or whole without prior permission of the Executive Body of Monday Morning for any purposes, including, but not limited to print and electronic form.
Monday Morning is the student Media Body of National Institute Of Technology Rourkela. We cover all the events, issues and activities going on inside the campus. We serve as a link between the administration and the students.
DD & CWC
© 2015 - 2022 Monday Morning. All rights reserved.