Charpak Summer Internship, France winners share their internship abroad experiences

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 Charpak france intern
Are you on a doubt whether taking a time on internship abroad is worthwhile? Or whether it really does bring about an awesome experience, as some say it does? Well we have two scholarship winning candidates from the Charpak Internship programme, France, expressing their point of views after they have completed the programme with grandeur.
Nivetha Vasantha and Ayush Sharma share their experience and Exclaims: “YES!”

1. Deciding to take an Internship

Ayush: “That’s an interesting story, I actually didn’t decide voluntarily! I was in Pondicherry over the weekend. Was coming back and in bus a friend called me and said about this. I applied and got it. I only wanted to go to Paris, So I applied at UPMC. I got a positive reply and later a Scholarship was granted. So that was it “

Nivetha: “I was actually searching for internship abroad. Through social network I got to know about campus France scholarship. I was not confident in the beginning because very few students will be selected every year. Then I somehow made my mind to apply. And in the month of October I started applying for universities in France. I requested around 60 professors. And got two replies. One was positive and the other was negative. Finally professor from Ecole centrale of Paris got impressed by my resume and he guided me to work further. Here comes the SOP part: I just opted a topic related to my field of study. I studied many research papers and came out with a decent sop. Then I applied on the “last day” as usual. Before getting the results I was working for my internship in Bangalore, India (IBAB). Actually I was trying to apply there as a backup option. The day came: 31 people got selected from India. My name was not there and I was not worried and I planned to spend from my own pocket as my professor agreed to pay 436€ /month. I was applying for visa and searching for accommodation. After 4 days I got a mail from campus France office Chennai “you got selected for campus France scholarship. Could you tell your results ASAP” I was shocked to the core. Then everything was easy for me. Right from visa process to accommodation. That’s the end of how I got the internship story.”

Related: 3 strategic phases to follow when writing an email to a professor


2. Internship Experience

Ayush: “My work place was awesome. The first day there itself surprised me, I had a cabin with my name plate on it. There was a PC with all additional accessories and a giant piano related to my experiment but still having a piano was a very exciting thought. There was a file kept on table addressed to me in which everything was explained infographically about my work. My colleagues were always nice and helped me a lot with everything whether it’s about being the translators or being close friends. My professor was so happy with my work that he actually recommended me and gave me an option for Masters. Our lab completed 50 years last month so we had a celebration with cocktail party and a concert. The food at my workplace was good. I often took part in long discussions with random people in some places and got to know about their culture. We had ‘La fete de musique’ and it was amazing. We also had 14th of July celebrations and fireworks at Eiffel (Bastille day).”

Nivetha: “When I got out of the airport a man in a perfect outfit was holding my name board, I was offered a ride in Mercedes from airport to campus France office. What else a person new to Paris need. enjoying the scenic view outside riding in a Mercedes. Then I went to the office and I got my residence details and went to my room. Perfect start. Language was completely tough. But I tried to manage. I got many friends in my residence .Then I went to my lab and the professor was really cool. There I started my internship work with his guidance. Just in 4 days I got paid for 3 months by my professor. He just gave an idea of what project was going on there.
Then I suggested my idea, we discussed for a while and started our work. It was quite interesting! They were helpful. As I was a scholarship holder I was given fee reduction in the residence .Everything was comfy. I continued for the rest of the months.”


3. Living in France

Ayush: “As I expected before going, first 3-4 days were struggling because new place, new people, new language. I experienced French food, went to theatres, opera houses, wine tastings, social gatherings etc. I never slept more than 4-5 hours during my whole stay because i liked exploring the city so much. I used to go to work from 9 am – 6 pm and I used to cook dinner until 8-9 pm. After that I used to walk by the streets, discovering many places One of my best finding was riverside salsa at jussieu where I learnt basics of salsa and then used to come back at 3-4 am. I knew that I didn’t have much time so apart from weekends I used to go and explore every day. I made many friends, not only with the French but also with really diverse people from South Africa, Brasil, Russia, Germany, Spain, Japan and many more.”

Nivetha: “About living part, it is so easy in Paris, except for the expensive accommodation and transport. Well, it is easy to survive with a scholarship though. And of course if we share our rooms it is cheap. Other than that people you come across are really cool. Tourist places like Eiffel, Montparnasse, Louvre Versailles and almost all the parks. Everything was mind blowing. Especially Sacred Cour, Which is located at the highest point of the city, happens to be really majestic. When I was there it was raining and I can see the Eiffel Tower and Montparnasse from over there with a spread of rainbow in the sky.”


4. Last Moments

Ayush: “All I wish is I could have stayed more. It was a once in a lifetime experience.”

Nivetha: “Yeah, I was actually crying when I started from Paris. Finding a way to go back (to Paris)”


Related: 7 strategic steps to apply for Charpak Exchange Program, France congratulates Ayush and Nivetha for their success. And thanks for sharing your internship abroad experiences with our followers. Application for Charpak Internship 2016 is not yet opened

You are most welcome to share your internship abroad experiences if you had an opportunity!  Use the comments section below

Article contributors:

ayushAyush Sharma

Ayush is pursuing his B.Tech in Electrical and Electronics Engg. at VIT University, Vellore, India. Under the Charpak  Internship program, he visited Université Pierre et Marie Curie (UPMC), France last summer. He is a firm believer  of “Impossible is nothing!”



Nivetha Vasantha

Nivetha is in her final year of B.Tech Bioinformatics, pursuing from Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU). She had a  chance to do her summer internship at École centrale Paris, France as part of the Charpak program. She aims to get into the field  of Computational Biology at a European university for her masters. Her hobbies are exploring the world, reading books,  enjoying the pleasant weather.


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Written by

Vinay Nair likes to explore topics related to higher education and looks forward to help prospective students with queries related to their study abroad dreams.


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