Monday, September 28, 2009

Conclusion of the ThinkSwiss Experience

To conclude and summarize our time as ThinkSwiss scholars, the administration has asked us to provide some post-experience remarks. Below are my comments.


  • Overall impression – Did your stay meet your expectations?

My stay in Switzerland met my expectations. During the week I was able to work on my research. On the weekends I had the opportunity to explore Switzerland. In my field (Finance) work on my dissertation is mostly independent. But at UNIL I was able to regularly discuss my research with faculty.

  • Three positive points?

  1. The faculty were very helpful and willing to spend time working with me.
  2. I was provided with the resources necessarily to properly conduct research.
  3. The ease of transition to living in Switzerland for three months was generally easy.

  • Three negative points / challenges?

  1. Switzerland is a relatively expensive place to live – funding could be more.
  2. Three months is not enough time to finish a research project, having a longer term option would also be good.
  3. More official meetings with the other ThinkSwiss scholars and the administration to further build relationships would be nice.

  • How well were you coached and integrated in the research team?

I was integrated into the department almost immediately. I believe I had more face time with faculty than many of the other PhD students

  • Comparison (advantages and disadvantages) between your Swiss and your U.S. research lab, research mentality and team.

Advantages of U.S.:

  1. PhD students were a more cohesive group.
  2. Faculty has a broader range of interests.

Advantages of Switzerland:

  1. Fewer people in the department and so easier to know everyone’s work.
  2. PhD students had more resources available to them.
  • Do you consider going back to Switzerland for studying, a Ph. D. program, work or on vacation?

Yes, I would like to work in Switzerland in the near future.


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