Archive for April, 2011

For a PhD…

April 15, 2011 2 comments

Applicants need to:

  • have (or soon receive) a Masters degree in computer science/engineering, informatics, or related fields
  • be really excited about our project
  • be persistent (get back up and continue when things don’t work out as planned — true research rarely works out as planned)
  • be fearless (e.g., be ok hacking a virtual machine, a compiler, a kernel, or implementing a complex algorithm)
  • have a small child’s attitude (to want to understand and learn about everything they encounter)
  • have an engineer’s attitude (not to take the first solution that comes to mind, but to look at the key alternatives)
  • have a researcher’s attitude (to want to truly understand something, and to not be satisfied with the first best explanation)
  • want to look at the simple and obvious before exploring the complicated
  • be able to focus (to ignore the many other cool things one could also do)
  • derive pleasure from coming up with a logical and clear argument or explanation
  • like to read (books, papers, papers, papers)
  • like to write (prospectus, proposal, dissertation, and papers)
  • like to present (at conferences, or in class)
  • like to convince others using sound arguments
  • be ok working hard
  • under-promise and over-deliver
  • be happy staying in Lugano for quite some time
  • be ok traveling long distance from time to time (e.g., for conferences, maybe internships)
  • be ok with the USI informatics PhD regulations (e.g., TAing and taking some courses)
  • be ok investing 3+ years as a “research apprentice” (aka PhD student)

I came across this list in an announcement for a PhD opening. It’s probably one of the most interesting announcements I have ever seen.

One would feel that the list is asking for too much. Well you wouldn’t feel so, if you understand this :)…

…and the irreversible impact of PhD on a grad student 🙂

– A Grad Student!

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