ITMO U Summer School Welcomed American Students

It was the second short-term program for American students. This year 9 students made research projects at Department of Photonics and Optical Information Technology. They were offered four courses: quantum cryptography, femtosecond optics, terahertz bioinformatics and image processing.

“In 2015 we included in the courses several Russian language and culture classes. This year students spent all the time for research projects. They studied not only articles and works written by scientists, but also received their own results,” noted Elizaveta Buyanovskaya, Summer school supervisor and research assistant at Department of Photonics and Optical Information Technology.

Most of American students dealt with lab practice for the first time. They worked in ITMO U labs that have no equals in the world. For example, they made experiments at Quantum Informatics Lab. After two-week practice students presented final papers that was evaluated by supervisors.

American students underlined that they appreciated that Russian professors and students supported them. They also said that they would recommend their friends these short-term programs. In the interview they talked what was the most interesting and what surprised them in Russia.

Ma Shiyu: It was difficult to comprehend new knowledge because in University of Rochester I had only one optical course. ITMO U professors assisted me and also involved Russian students to help and to work here. If I am not good in something I usually try to understand by reading books. Nobody helps me. Self-learning is normal for higher education. However here at ITMO University everybody was very open and ready to help.

Li Guoxin: I am a freshman so I have never done truly research before, so here I experienced and enjoyed Russian type of research and learned a lot from this. I also had my own experiment.

Herbert Eric: the professors are really masters of optics. They helped me to understand very difficult theory. I will really miss the time of working here. I actually had no experiments before. I came to the point that free communication is the most important thing in research. Sometimes we spent a lot of time to understand each other but we worked a lot and managed to complete the project.

Yu Lu: Here in St. Petersburg I feel very welcomed. My major is optics. The experience in lab at my school differs from what I am doing here. We were provided with lab manuals, our instructors told us exactly what to do. Here it is more about discussing all the things together – the research methods and other details. I don`t know what to expect. Furthermore despite the fact that PhD researchers who supervised are more fluent in this field they appreciated my opinion and gave me an opportunity to express it. While staying here I was a little bit sick. My supervisor took care about me. In a hospital she translated my complaints and translated back what a doctor said. I really appreciated that professors spent their free time to work with us, they were very patient and kind. It impressed me to contribute more to the project.