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Going abroad: testimonies

Here are a few testimonies from students who have gone abroad. 

An M1 internship in Helsinki thanks to an A*Midex scholarship

My name is Marie Tautou and I am a first year student in the Master of Neurosciences at the University of Aix-Marseille, specializing in Neurobiology, Neurophysiology and Neuropathology.

I left for my M1 3 month internship in Helsinki, Finland. I was at the Institute of Biotechnology at the University of Helsinki in the team of Dr. Mikko Airavaara and Dr. Andrii Domanskyi, to study whether increasing the level of microRNA increased the survival of dopaminergic neurons in Parkinson’s disease. I applied the culture of dopaminergic neurons from mouse embryos, immunohistochemistry but also the analysis of images obtained by light microscopy. I also learned new methods such as cloning, plasmid design or cell culture.

This experience allowed me to be confronted with a new approach to research, and also to widen my field of possibility for the thesis or a future internship. You also meet new people with whom to exchange on science and it is very stimulating, especially as my tutors were very available and attentive.

The small bonus being the trip itself, I discovered a new country that I loved, and I was able to travel to Estonia and Sweden as well. Don’t hesitate because it’s a very rewarding opportunity!

Interviewed in July 2017

© Marie Tautou
Emilie Dinh went to Helsinki in 2016

The possibility for me to do an internship abroad as part of the neuroscience Master's program was an incredible opportunity in every way. It allowed me to travel and discover a new world, both from a touristic and professional point of view. Research is an international field of work, it is necessary to know how to speak English, work with foreigners, adapt, create relationships... and I feel that I have acquired all this thanks to my M1 internship in Helsinki, Finland. Unfortunately, it only lasted two and a half months, but the people I met at the Neuroscience Center, especially the teams of Sari Lauri and Claudio Rivera, gave me incredibly good guidance and taught me a lot (I keep very good contacts with them).

An internship allows us to put into practice what we have learned in class, but doing it abroad is an additional challenge that has brought me a lot more. So if you have the opportunity, I encourage you to take it and I also advise you to go to Helsinki because not only is Finland a beautiful country (natural, peaceful and English-speaking!) but it is also a very affordable starting point to other destinations!

The experience was perfect for me (being able to live it with a classmate and my boyfriend helped a lot!), I have only good memories, and I wish the same to everyone.

- Interviewed in 2016

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