Exchange Diaries  

By International Relations Cell

Outbound Diaries 2019

Vignesh Viswanathan | Computer Science and Engineering

National University of Singapore, Singapore

Research Area: Computational Economics

Duration: 2.5 Months

Why do you think foreign training is important for a students life?
I think it gives you a lot of exposure to how other universities work, how research works and how research groups behave outside India. It is very helpful if you are interested in doing a PhD because you get a fair idea about how your life will be if you choose to do so.

How was your experience?
My experience was amazing. Everyone was very friendly, very calm, and very helpful. The people in my lab went out of their way to make me feel comfortable and ensured that I had a good time. This along with the relaxed work environment made it a very comfortable experience. Apart from that it was also a great learning experience in the sense that I got to learn a lot about every stage of a research project.

Can you tell us about your scholarship programme ?
I was funded by the IITKGP Foundation Scholarship program. I received this through IR Cell’s Foreign Training Portal. There’s an application which needs an invitation letter from a professor (which usually has its deadline in January). They provide USD 3000 which is supposed to cover all your expenses.

How did you manage your finances?
I didn’t really worry about finances as NUS had canteens with relatively cheap food. Accommodation on the other hand was more expensive and I had to settle for a small single room. Overall these two were my biggest expenditure areas. Transport and tourism did not cost me much since I did not do too many touristy things.

How did you apply for Foreign Training?
I mailed a few professors and also applied to a bunch of programs. This particular professor replied and said he liked my application and asked me to critically analyse one of his papers. Once I sent the critical analysis to him, and he responded saying my critical analysis was good and invited me for an interview. However, he did not have any funding and that is where the IITKGP Foundation Scholarship came in.

Any advice for fellow KGPians?
Do not do an FT solely because you want to go abroad. Corporate internships give you just as amazing an experience. Do an FT only if you are interested in research and are willing to do the work Prof’s are will to give you.