Richard Feynman, Nobel prize-winning physicist, once said, “nature’s imagination is so much greater than man’s, she’s never going to let us relax.” This single quote should suffice in giving you an idea about the enormous potential for research that Physics has. Physics is the study of the laws of nature that has never seized to amaze us –  tons of new and improved theories are being proposed every day in an attempt to get us even an inch closer to better understanding the secrets of space, time, and reality. And thanks to these initiatives, research has been going on consistently which provides a great opportunity of becoming a research intern in Engineering Physics.  

The question which arises now, is, ”How to apply for Research Internship?” Well, strictly speaking, all you need is your CV, a cover letter, and a Letter of recommendation from your favorite prof. It actually becomes really simple if you just take care of certain things while designing your CV.

Here we will discuss the things you should focus on if you are seeking research intern in physics.

Academics and Scholastic Achievements sections of CV are almost invariant regardless of your department.

Now comes the Relevant Coursework part. It is one of the most crucial section in CV. It should have all the courses and topics you have studied which you think can be somehow related to your intern. Also, include courses which you will complete before your tentative date of the intern. List these courses in the decreasing order of their relevance to the work you are applying for.

Don’t forget to include topics of other departments as well. For example, it may be beneficial to mention Linear Algebra or Calculus or Statistics or other courses which will probably be useful to you.

Additionally, this is the right place to boast about any Online Course or Independent Study you have done. Whether a course in Data Science or in General Relativity, it would be great to mention it along with its source. It shows your willingness to learn things. It should be noted down that never ever mention something you haven’t done or you can get into serious trouble.

Projects are again an important part of CV as they give an idea about past experience. What all we can include in this section has been discussed in great detail in an earlier article. Just don’t forget that if you have done some projects in your field of research, or even department, it might be very helpful. Even if it isn’t much you have done in the field of your expected intern, don’t worry, who knows if ELL100 projects do the trick?

Laboratory Work is pivotal in fetching you a research intern, hence you should definitely emphasize on this part in your CV. As you are seeking an internship in Physics, mention all important experiments you have already performed (in your department or otherwise), and also the ones you will perform before the prospective internship. You should also include the experiments you have performed in the first year (I am sure you haven’t forgotten PYP100). Once again, place these according to their relevance to your field of research.   

There is something you should remember at this point. While lab work may not be that important for an intern in theoretical physics, it is a matter of utmost importance in case of experimental physics. In that case, mention all of the important experiments you have performed, from He-Ne Lasers to Diffraction Grating. If you are seeking intern in the field of applied physics, lab work is important but what is prominent in that case is Projects.  

Technical Skills, SocialService/Work Experience, Positions of Responsibility and Extra Currics are once again more or less same, irrespective of your department. They are nicely discussed and explained in General CV.

So, that’s it! You are done. Wait!! There is something left, probably the most important thing. Many people will follow these steps so is there a way for you to stand out? Yeah, there is! Your achievements will definitely get your attention but what will matter more is how you present your accomplishment. Keep this in mind and prioritize things you are adding according to their relevance and use.

So, that’s it, for sure this time.

Article by: Anmol Ojha

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