The University's website regularly publishes information about grants, competitions and internship programmes from employers – partners of St Petersburg University. Having taken part in one of such competitive selections, two students were able to get an internship at one of the largest state corporations during the coronavirus pandemic.
Natalia Volodina and Ekaterina Verkhovskaia are chemistry students at St Petersburg University. The sphere of their research interests is radiochemistry. The students saw the announcement of the internship from Rosatom on the University website and decided to try their hand: the winners of the competition will gain experience in the Rosatom Growth Laboratory. They can work there alongside the best nuclear scientists in the country.
During the pandemic, over 500 University students find employment. St Petersburg University helped to find a job for students who proved to be excellent in carrying out projects in: the Psychological Clinic; the Legal Clinic; the Centre for Financial Literacy; the Social Translation Centre; the IT Clinic; and the Volunteer Centre at St Petersburg University.
The spring registration for the state corporation's internship programme received more than 300 applications from students from 35 universities in 60 Russian cities. Among them are: National Research Nuclear University MEPhI (Moscow Engineering Physics Institute); Moscow State University; Bauman Moscow State Technical University; Peter the Great St Petersburg Polytechnic University; Saint Petersburg State University of Aerospace Instrumentation; ITMO University; and others. The competitive selection was multi-stage: the participants solved a specialised task on a real research problem, recorded a video presentation, demonstrated a portfolio, and had an online interview.
‘The organisers sent several cases to choose from. The most interesting task seemed to me the one from the V.G. Khlopin Radium Institute. Although my research at the University is close to the case topic, it took me a long time to understood the specifics of the assignment,’ Natalia Volodina shared the story of her victory. ‘But now I can confidently say that it was not in vain: at Rosatom I will be working on testing new extractants and primary laboratory testing of extraction technologies.’
Ekaterina Verkhovskaia chose the same direction as her coursemate Natalia Volodina. Ekaterina notes that the internship, which will begin very soon, will be an unrivalled opportunity for her to immerse herself in real research work even before graduation. According to the student, especially exciting was the final stage of the competition – an online interview. ‘Together with my research supervisor, we discussed my interests in the project and my future tasks. During the internship, I plan to work on something without which nuclear fuel cannot be created or used: on methods of dissolving oxide raw materials for nuclear fuel and dissolving spent nuclear fuel,’ said Ekaterina Verkhovskaia.
The Rosatom internship lasts from one to three years, and the participants are paid. Trainees will have flexible working hours, a social package, as well as participate in master classes and trainings to develop their soft skills. The nuclear corporation has recently announced the start of the student case competition, which will last until 19 July inclusive.