Summer Internship Experience-First Hand Report
Chronicle Editor @ Aug 22, 2008
view in one page and print
In the last month’s issue of chronicle, we requested students to tell our readers about their Summer Internship Experience. We are publishing below their experiences. The write-ups are edited to match the space available. We hope that their junior brothers will find the article useful.
1) Praharsh Sharma (3rd year Electronics Engineering)
I pursued my summer internship at Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore for the duration May-June 2008. I worked in the Electronics Laboratory at NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) Research Centre, IISc Bangalore for 7-8 weeks.
I arranged the training by contacting the professor through e-mail. The rule of thumb is to keep e-mailing the professors whose area of interest and research matches with one's own. Their profiles are available on their home-pages on the website.
IISc Bangalore is the leading research institute in India and has a brand reputation in many European Universities. An internship at a place like IISc Bangalore is perhaps the best opportunity within the country.
The Electronics lab at NMR Research Centre, IISc Bangalore possesses a host of contemporary and advanced electronic boards and embedded system kits (like ALTERA FPGA Kits, XILINX FPGA Kits, DSP kits, CYPRESS PSoC and many others) apart from all the common constituents of any Electronics Lab. It has a good collection of books and manuals as well. The lab is also decently equipped with computers and other necessary things. The environment at the lab was largely conducive to the purpose.
The project was on FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays) and other PLDs (Programmable Logic Devices) using HDLs (Hardware Description Languages) like VHDL and Simulation Software like ALTERA QUARTUS and CYPRESS WARP. It extended up to the implementation of NIOS II microprocessor and SOPC (System on Programmable Chip) implementation on the ALTERA STRATIX FPGA kit.
Specific things learnt during the internship:
Firstly, I started off with the basics of VHDL and FPGA operation. Initially, I worked on ALTERA MAX and ALTERA FLEX kits. Soon, I moved up to interfacing devices (like VGA Monitor, Keyboard and Mouse) to the ALTERA FLEX FPGA kit. Later on, I implemented the NIOS II soft-core microprocessor on ALTERA’s high-end STRATIX kit and wrote some programs to run them and test the implementation of NIOS II. Finally, I ended up with SOPC implementation on the ALTERA STRATIX kit using the SOPC Builder. I used Simulation Software like ALTERA QUARTUS, CYPRESS WARP and NIOS II IDE. Apart from this, I also worked on some PLDs and their circuit boards.
I was not provided any accommodation or stipend for the internship. It had to be born on one's own. The reason was that my internship was not through JNCASR or IAS. IISc Bangalore invites internship applications through these two application procedures at the institute level. I had applied through these but could not beat the competition (the number of students chosen from around the country is generally only a few tens in a particular field of interest). Thereafter one needs to resort to contacting individual professors through e-mail.
I chose this internship over another internship opportunity (at Institute of Solid State Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China). Although, I had to compromise on the loss of my Paper Publication opportunity at Chinese Academy of Sciences, I got a better project to work upon and at a better reputed place.
My advice to the aspirants would be to look for a reputed organisation/professor to work at/under, project of your area of interest and paper publication opportunity, if possible. Stipend and other incentives come into picture after these things.
2) Prakash Chandra Trivedi (4th year Metallurgical Engineering)
I contacted Subhash Shanbhag (Chemical 1985), who helped me a lot. He talked to Mahindra Group, Mumbai and they sent letter to TPO (Training and Placement Office) for two students (one for mechanical & one for metallurgy).
I did my summer training at Mahindra Systech, Mumbai (http://www.mahindra.com/
) and Mahindra Forgings Ltd., Chakan, Pune (http://www.mahindraforgings.com
/). I already did a lot of work in Metallurgical field and I think on that basis I got a very exciting industrial work there. Project was based on their own industrial problem "Elimination of bending problem of crankshafts at Mahindra forgings".
I got lot of exposure on the industrial level and I proved myself there by introducing innovative things, which is going to give direct benefit of around Rs 3.8 crore per annum to Mahindra forgings Ltd. I worked on the shop floor of the forging plant and that allowed me to realize difference between a lab work and a plant work.
Industrial discipline, lot of Metallurgical core knowledge relating to Forgings, Heat treatment and automated metallurgy etc. and most important how to introduce cost effective things on industrial level. I used to attend their internal meetings. I was from IT-BHU so always peoples there allow me to discuss technical aspects in meetings. I think that was the most interesting part of my training.
I got generous stipend and I spent complete 45 days there. I was having accommodation at IIT-Bombay in Mumbai and was given Mahindra Guest House at Chakan, Pune.
Basically Mahindra group had acquired this forgings company 4 Years back and currently its 4th largest forgings company in India. They have a lot of exposure for Mechanical Engineering, Metallurgical Engineering as well as Electrical engineering. I think I got there more than expectations. They are at the transition state and want to reciprocate their production.
Peoples there were very helpful. My guides Mr. S.G. Wagle and Mr. Amitabha Hazari (Wagle sir was earlier in L & T, Mumbai and then 11 years in China before switching to Mahindra group as a Dy. G. Manager. Mr. Amitabha Hazari is B. Tech. and M. Tech. passout from IIT-Kharagpur) were so much helpful that I never realized that I was at Mumbai not in UP.
When I completed my work, CEO of Mahindra Forgings Mr. Steve Ball was satisfied with my work and later he wrote me that I did an excellent work in a little span of time. I think that a very good effort shown by me at Mumbai has given a direct impact to TATA Motors recruiter and that’s why I am the only Metallurgist to be selected in TATA Motors through campus placement.
I would like to suggest to all my juniors at IT-BHU that please do excellent summer training, utilize your one and half months time with full dedication and with full sincerity. I assure you that your summer work always reflects your personality in front of your recruiter. Minimum I realized this. Best of luck to all of you for your future endeavour!
Prakash Chandra Trivedi
3) Nishant Kumar Jain (3rd year Computer Science and Engineering)
This summer, I got to intern at NEEV technologies at Bangalore. Neev Technologies is a software service provider expertise in web 2.0 development, RIA and many more .Better part is that it is founded by our own alumni, Saurabh Chandra (Mechanical 2001). It had invited applications from third year students CSE for two positions, but being a second yearite, I happened to apply on my own. Unexpectedly, they reached me back the very same day, and there I go, planning for summers in Bangalore.
Though only three years old, the Company has a great work profile. I was more than happy to get interned at this company. But I must say the whole experience went way above my expectations. I figured since I was an intern, they wouldn't trust much. The stereotypical summer internship for a second year undergrad involves performing tedious, boring tasks for a huge company or more commonly a research internship at an Institution, which is almost the opposite of my experience.
In a company of comparatively small size, I got to work on stimulating project of developing iPhone native application. This is an all new and exciting field in mobile development. The coolest part was that I worked on a MacBook, and when my game application finally ran on iPhone, I could not help my goose bumps. I can tell you that was the 'THE' moment in recent times for me.
I learned a lot of technical know-how of this Apple platform, and had my first experience to work in a professional environment. Working on a professional project is quite different from academic ones that we pursue. You just don't make the product , but also look out for efficient designing for better performance and robustness, having attractive and perfect user-interface all that goes down to single pixel ,among many other, and of course your adaptability to all new and vibrant technologies. In the end I found myself all the more confident and willing to face challenges. And not to forget a lot of good relationship's that I made. Certainly, it is a very fun and flexible place to work where people never mention their titles and Interns are treated like full-time employees in almost every way. It's great to feel trusted and valued for my contributions.
For the economics, in addition to a stipend, I was reimbursed for my travel, provided a flat for accommodation (this really means something in Bangalore), and had my breakfast, lunch, snacks, coffee and all that, at company's cafe. But voila, another surprise, Just as I finished my exit formalities, I was handed a bonus cheque by Saurabh sir himself. Now that was something really nice, showing how keenly they followed my work. This is all from my summers.
As for the advice, I must accept the luck factor involved in landing you at right place. But you should try reach out newer places. Internship is not that easy to grab, and for second yearites it is even tougher. But it is Second year Internship where you enjoy all the flexibility. Internship must be valued in terms of your prospect of learning rather than financials. You must decide on a broad outline of things that interests you and then should look out for institutions and organisations working in it.
Nishant Kumar Jain
4) Devender Singh Maun (2nd year Ceramic Engineering)
I am Devender Singh, student of 2nd
year pursuing B. Tech. in ceramic engineering. I did summer internship in my very first year at Central Glass and Ceramic Research Institute, Kolkata (a CSIR lab). I was curious to know more about the scope of my branch and was baffled about my career. So, to get answers of all these questions I decided to go for a summer internship in my first year itself.
I searched out good institute of Ceramic in India and find CGCRI, an appropriate place for doing internship. I contacted the Head of CGCRI and applied for a summer internship. After getting selected I was required to give a forwarded letter from our HOD for allowing me to do summer internship at CGCRI. I was interested in ceramic coatings so I was asked to work in Sol-Gel department of CGCRI and Dr. Debtosh Kundu, Scientist, CGCRI was assigned as my project instructor. They were very surprised to know that I am a first year student. I was astonished to see the labs. Institute made available accommodation in CSIR guest house. Summer internees have to work from 10am to 5pm but I used to spend most of my time in labs and with my PI (project instructor). I used to discuss a lot with my PI about the scope of my branch and making a career in this field. Moreover, I worked between PhD scholars and get a chance to interact with them and discussed a lot with them regarding making a career in this field.
I started my work by studying basic sol-gel process (as I was a first year student) and its application but I gained interest in the subject and then I synthesized bulk gel, silica microspheres and thin coatings of silica on glass slides using sol-gel technique. I studied the effect of concentration of solution and lifting speed on coating thickness and derived some conclusions like shift of maxima on left side because of increased thickness which resulted in higher path difference leading to increase in number of maxima in particular length. After completing this project I got one more project and was asked to study the change in photo catalytic properties of titania (TiO2) when titania was coated on silica microspheres and my PI was astounded at the results I produced because we have just enhanced the photo catalytic properties of titania to great extent.
Practical application of this work is in water purification units. Titania microspheres cannot be used directly for purification as titania is harmful for health but coating titania on silica microspheres not only solved this problem but also enhanced the photo catalytic properties of titania. My work on thin coatings of silica on glass slides has wide applications in making anti-reflecting glasses and making glasses which only allows particular wavelength of light to pass through them.
After the end of my training, I had two projects under my belt, co-authorship of one scientific paper (Effect on photo catalytic properties of titania when coated on silica microspheres) and knew what exactly I have to do in coming days J
So, I think if one is confused in deciding his future (software, core or management) he/she must go for summer internship in early stages (2nd year or may be 1st year ;-)) and can find their interest. Also, internship in first year facilitates your chances of getting a foreign internship in coming years.
Devender Singh Maun
Leave a comment
(if you having troubles, try posting your comment on this page
or send an email to chronicle @ itbhuglobal.org)