Twenty five students from six universities, representing seven nationalities, will be hosted by the College for eight-week research projects.
The event, hosted by Professor Simone Buitendijk, Vice-Provost (Education), was an opportunity to officially welcome the students to the College and to thank participating academics and departmental staff without whom this scheme would not be possible.
I didn’t expect London to be so beautiful! Anuujin Odkhuu Mongolian University of Science and Technology
The International Research Opportunities Programme presents a unique opportunity for students to gain international research experience and experience life in another country during the summer break. Students who take part can broaden their perspectives, gain new experiences and develop a wide range of skills, whilst working with world-renowned researchers on cutting-edge projects.
Welcoming the new students, Professor Buitendijk said: “I truly believe in these kinds of international exchange programmes. I think it’s really important that you see beyond your own local environment and work together with students from different countries, are exposed to other cultures and see perspectives that are slightly different than yours.”
We spoke to some of the international students about their first impressions of Imperial and what they hope to get out of their summer here.
Enthusiasm, discovery, connections
Sara Wilson, a materials science student from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), will spend the summer researching semi-conducting polymers in Professor Molly Stevens’ lab. She said: “This summer I hope to meet a lot of people, learn something new and explore London!” Her favourite thing about London so far has been that it’s so walkable and she plans on making the most of all the cultural opportunities available alongside her studies.
Yoonsoo Kim and Ji Yong Yu from Seoul National University will be researching physics at Imperial. Discussing their first impressions of London, they’ve been impressed by all the green spaces and parks that London has to offer, especially as Hyde Park is so close to Imperial’s South Kensington campus. On what he hopes to achieve this summer, Ji Yong Yu said: “I want to learn things in the lab, improve my English and explore the city.”
Telecommunications student Anuujin Odkhuu from the Mongolian University of Science and Technology will be researching 5G technologies in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. “I didn’t expect London to be so beautiful!” she said. “I’d like to improve my English and I think the work in the lab here will really help me for my final year of studies when I return home to Mongolia.”
As well as Imperial hosting students, 34 Imperial undergraduate students also have the opportunity to undertake 8-week research placements this summer at partner universities in the US, Canada, and South Korea.
Ioan Budea, an Imperial Computing student from Romania, spoke about his experiences at MIT last summer researching privacy preserving data architecture. Before going to MIT, Ioan thought he might not be able to do meaningful work in just 8 weeks, but found this to be the most rewarding part of his summer.
He said: “Even though you’re here for two months, you can find projects to contribute to and you can find enthusiastic people to work with. The connections you’re going to make here are going to help you a lot, even when you’re back at your universities.”
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