Internship Field: Medical Technology, Biomechanics, Neuroprosthetics
Major: Biomechanical Engineering
Location: St. Ingbert b. Saarbrücken
Duration: June – September 2007
Description: My overarching task was to refine the structure and assembly of existing tungsten needles used to insert electrodes into peripheral nerves. To begin with, the job involved extensive research through internet and library archives, collecting as much background data on the subject as was possible, in order to familiarize myself with the material and prior research in the field. Later on, I was given much more flexibility in setting my own hours and tasks, experimenting with a wide variety of structure forms and assembly methods in discovering the overall best model to use in further experiments.
Comments: I absorbed a huge amount of information on the subject of neuroprosthetics, and refined my literature research abilities in the process. The technical skills required in needles etching and other lab tasks are probably not so applicable to my future endeavors, but the experience of developing my own lab protocols and fine-tuning them will be a boon down the road.
German language skills: Coming to Berlin, I was competent in German. After 5 ½ months in Germany, I would say that my language proficiency is approaching fluent, and is definitely already there for everyday use. The summer immersion did more for my German than anything else.
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Note: For internships at the IBMT it is highly recommended to stay for more than three months.