International student life comes with challenges and the master thesis is definitely one of the top 3. Many thanks Hindol & Duy, for these great summaries about internship possibilities in Nice! Also make sure you check Hildol’s oppinion too!
Contributor: Duy [Vietnam]
Forgive me for being brutally honest here. This will be the most devastating thing you have to do in this semester and it will waste half of the time you spend in Nice. So I have few advices for you:
Rely on yourself.
First of all, don’t expect so much from the professors here to find you an internship or thesis. For sure, they can support you with recommendation letters (which you don’t actually need to apply to the company or the bank). But this is the only thing they can do. They are unable to suggest you any option or connection: All they provide is tons of job announcements (mostly in French) which you can easily find on LinkedIn. Again, since they are just normal professors in the university, don’t expect so much from them. If you want to get your job done, you have to manage it by yourself.
As soon as possible?
Secondly, it is obvious that you must start your job search procedures or finding your connection as soon as possible (even since October/ November). The question is when you should send your application? Experience points out that most of the applications before and on Christmas are failures. This moment of time is so early that everyone is too busy preparing for their Christmas and tends to overlook your application. Remember that for one low quality application you submit, you lose one potential position. My advice: do this after Christmas (especially January).
Where to apply?
Thirdly, it should be easy to find a master’s thesis or research internship in France and Europe. The scientific institutes like Inria or Max Planck are the good choices. How about proper internship in company or bank, where to apply? I have to stress that language is the problem in France: people here are totally obsessed by their mother language. Here in France, everytime I start a conversation in English, I don’t even recognize how and when it switches back into French. So if you don’t have any connection or recommendation to the French company and you can’t tell a joke or write your motivation letter in French, don’t ever think of finding a proper job in France. Instead, spend time to apply to Germany, Italy, UK, or even Switzerland (trust me; it is still easier than France). According to experiences of many generations, Germany is the promising land for Mathmods students.
Worst case scenario.
Last but not least, what if you get accepted in one position, which is not really bad but not too good? You wonder if you should reject this to wait for the responses from better places. Keep in mind that, in case you reject, the worst scenario is just that you would go for master’s thesis with Prof. Delarue with around 500€ monthly salary (it is OK come on!). So, the coordinator here offers this kind of position for someone who can’t find internship for the next semester. This is not official, so don’t tell it out loud. I hope that this final information could help you with your choice in the future. PS: I did choose the safer choice (accepting the job) and now I regret a little bit.