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IISc Summer Research Fellowship

Harshita | IISc | Summer Research Fellowship | ECE

Yup, it’s summer time and as said, it’s time for internships!! Every student has been fond of doing an internship at this prestigious institution – IISc Bangalore. And today we have Ms.Harshita P to share her intern experience at the most prestigious university in India.

InternFeel: Please tell us something about yourself. Where and what are you studying currently?

Harshita: I am Harshita.P pursuing the final year of Electronics and Communication at RV College of Engineering. I am currently working as an Intern in Cypress Semiconductor. I got an opportunity to work in Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. I got the Indian Academy of Sciences’ Summer Research Fellowship 2017. My interests and projects were related to Signal processing, specifically on audio, speech and other acoustic signals. Being a passionate musician and vocalist, sound always fascinated me. I worked in LEAP(Learning and Extraction of Acoustic Patterns) lab under the guidance of Dr. Sriram Ganapathy.

InternFeel: Give us details about your internship – process of application, stipend, duration and place?

Harshita: I came across the fellowship application portal in which the academic details, extra-curricular activities and an SOP(Statement Of Purpose) needs to be filled. My CGPA, 10th and 12th results were fairly good. I have published papers also in my field of interest. I was very frank and concise in my SOP. Honestly, I did not put much effort into the SOP. I clearly mentioned by fields of interest, research I would like to be a part of and my motivation to take it up. One letter of recommendation is required from a college professor. The LOR is to ensure that student is of good character and is truly interested. The LOR must be decent, but it is not a key deciding factor. My monthly stipend was Rs. 10,000 per month. I interned for a period of two months.


InternFeel: How competitive was the selection process? According to you, which qualities have helped you have an edge in the selection process? Also, what were the key things that selectors were looking for?

Harshita: The selection process is very competitive. I believe the projects, the IEEE papers and overall profile is very important. My SOP clearly mentioned these details and the background behind opting those fields. I was honest about my academic and cultural activity achievements. State and National level awards in music might have also given me the edge. The selectors look for individuals who are clear about what they want to pursue and their commitment to making the most of the opportunity given. Other achievements can also be added if it is significant.


InternFeel: Could you please highlight the work/research you carried out during your internship period?

Harshita: My project was on feature extraction in speech signals. The speech models are trained using the frequency domain linear prediction coefficients and the obtained model is used on new test samples. The pre-requisites to the project understanding and the material required for it was shared by my guide. I was teamed with another Research Assistant and we worked on MATLAB platform. Indian Institute of Science has a lot of resources and is surely an amazing platform for research.

InternFeel: Can you give us interesting details about your experience – good and bad? (It could be something like the amazing location of your internship, the friends you made for life, a bad senior, accommodation given in case of an outstation internship and something along those line.)

Harshita: My experience was very interesting and it broadened my horizon. IISc being a premier institute, I learnt about several ongoing research projects. I got to interact with the other M-tech and PhD students. I felt at home as the faculty and student community is very supportive. The atmosphere at IISc is really amazing and student friendly. Being from Bangalore, I could travel from home. But, there is an option for outstation students to make use of the arrangements for food and accommodation provided by IAS (if required). The travel charges to location is also taken care of. Fortunately, my guide and fellow teammates were very encouraging. IISc is a very beautiful campus with lots of greenery and has all the amenities required. The campus and canteens are well maintained. Seniors were also very friendly and showed willingness to help. I was required to submit a four and eight week project report regarding the project carried out to Indian Academy of Sciences’ which needs prior approval by the guide. Post completion, certificates will be issued. There were sessions arranged for all summer research fellows including talks by researchers and eminent scientists, snacks, dinner on different occasions. There was significant effort put into bringing everyone to interact with one another. We got to meet people from different streams including several pure science and engineering branches. Apart from the fellowship, there are several students who apply for research assistant positions by contacting the professors through email.


InternFeel: How do you think this internship has helped you grow? In other words, what are your key takeaways from the internship?

Harshita: My internship has been very fruitful and it really helped me understand the basics of research. My project was based on one of the state-of-the-art techniques of feature extraction and really improved my knowledge. Internships in both academic and corporate institutions help in understanding the nature of work being done. This will help make career choices in future as well. Hence, I’d highly recommend an engineering aspirant to try both streams and choose wisely.


InternFeel: Has this internship had a decision altering impact on your career? Do you now think of a different future path as compared to before doing the internship?

Harshita: This internship gave me a clear perspective of research and has influenced me to a great extent. If a student aspires to go for a masters program, such internships really help in building a good profile.


InternFeel: Lastly, do you have any words of advice or caution for students aspiring for this internship and reading this piece?

Harshita: Choose your field of interest and look for opportunities that come your way. Summer internships are very helpful and must be done to improvise one’s knowledge. Some of the interns don’t take up the work with interest. The right attitude and willingness to push oneself to learn will make this experience worthy. If your college supports or encourages such internships, it is a boon. Else, one must be self-motivated towards seizing such an opportunity.


Please rate this internship from the scale of 0 to 10, 0 being really bad to 10 being awesome!

I would rate it as a 10!!


Harshita Words about InternFeel:

InternFeel is a very good platform for individuals to voice their opinions and share their experience with the world. It provides an insight to everyone who wants to pursue similar endeavours.


Harshita we are glad to have you here sharing your valuable internship experience. Thanks for your time. We wish you all success in all your future endeavours.

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