Meet Danish Alumnus Jacob, former technical student at CERN

"This was the best experience that I ever had."

 

(Danish version below)

Tell us a little about you, where you are from, what you study
My name is Jacob Aagaard and I am 25 years old. I come from Ebeltoft situated more or less in the centre of Denmark. I now live and study in Aarhus on Aarhus University School of Engineering, within the field of Electronics.

How did you find out about the opportunity at CERN?
Curiosity was the main driver. I found CERN during my search for an internship, which for me included an important parameter: going abroad to do something special / a bit out of the ordinary compared to what I already knew. Among a few other contenders, CERN was a perfect match for that.

What did you do there and for how long?
During my 10 months (initially 5 months, extended to 10) as a Technical Student in the Technology Department I upgraded a security system for two different installations (SPS (Super Proton Synchrotron) and AD (Antiproton Decelerator Horn) – a system that monitors High-Voltage solid-state switches and then warns the operator if a fault occurs in one of the switches.

What were the highlights?
- Designing and implementing an FPGA board with four optical channels and PLC connection.

- Finishing the production of the system and preparing it for installation.

- Working together with great people from a broad range of countries!

And the challenges?
- Planning / Structuring work most efficiently.

- Constantly feeling the need to know more and not having enough time to dig deeper.

What are the three things that you learned from this experience? What do you think it has brought you for your future career?
1.  Seemingly impossible tasks are definitely doable – therefore: approach work with gumption.

2. There are still many things to learn – therefore: be curious, ask questions and keep learning.

3 Collaboration makes things easier – therefore: stay open-minded and help fellow colleagues.

Any advice you’d give other Danish students hesitating to apply?
You are still (relatively) young and (relatively) unbound. Now is your chance for a unique experience that will not only distinguish you from others professionally speaking, but also teach you a lot about who you are on a personal level.

This was the best experience that I ever had.

The CERN technical student programme is open for applications until 16th April 2018: cern.ch/tech. Take part!

 

 

Fortæl os en smule om dig selv, hvor du kommer fra og  hvad du studerer
Mit navn er Jacob Aagaard og jeg er 25 år gammel. Jeg kommer fra Ebeltoft, som ligger nogenlunde midt i Danmark. Nu bor jeg i Aarhus og læser på Ingeniørhøjskolen, indenfor området Elektronik.

Hvordan fandt du ud af at man kan komme til CERN som student ?
Nysgerrighed var den vigtigste drivkraft. Jeg fandt CERN under min søgen for en praktikplads, hvilket for mig skulle opfylde følgende krav: et udlandsophold, hvor jeg fik mulighed for at lave noget specielt / ud over det sædvanlige, sammenlignet med hvad jeg kendte fra Danmark. Iblandt nogle få andre kandidater, var CERN et perfekt match til netop det.

Hvor lang tid var du på CERN og hvad lavede du ?
I løbet af de 10 måneder (oprindeligt 5 måneder, forlænget til 10) som Technical Student i TE/ABT/EC-afdelingen, opgraderede jeg et sikkerhedssystem for to forskellige installationer (SPS og AD Horn) – et system der monitorerer højspændings solid-state switches og advarer operatører hvis der opstår en fejl i en switch.

Hvad var det bedste og mest spænende ?
- Design og implementering af et FPGA kort med fire optiske kanaler og PLC-forbindelse

- Færdiggørelse af produktionen af systemet samt forberedelse af selve installationen.

- Samarbejde med fantastiske mennesker fra en række forskellige lande.

Hvad var udfordringerne ?
- Effektiv planlægning / strukturering af arbejdet.

- Et konstant behov for at vide mere og ikke have tid til at dykke dybere.

Hvad var de tre vigtigste ting du lærte ?, Hvordan kan det hjælpe dig I din fremtidige karriere ?

  1. Tilsyneladende umulige opgaver er ladsiggørlige – Derfor: Grib arbejdet an med gåpåmod.
  2. Der er stadig mange ting at lære – Derfor: Vær nysgerrig, stil spørgsmål og bliv ved med at lære.
  3. Samarbejde gør ting lettere – Derfor: Forbliv åbensindet og hjælp dine kollegaer når du kan.

Hvilke råd kan du give til andre danske studeredne som kunne tænke sig at ansøge om at komme til CERN ?
Du er stadig (relativt) ung og (relativt) ubundet. Nu har du chancen for en unik oplevelse, som ikke kun adskiller dig fra andre rent professionelt, men også lærer dig en masse om dig selv, personligt.

Det er den bedste oplevelse jeg nogensinde har haft.

 

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