Internship portal is highly important during the 5th and 6th semesters. Starting from day one I had signed all the IAFs that I found interesting. Murata was one of them, which I had signed for mainly 2 reasons: the profile was RnD in core and it was a foreign internship. I am an anime fan, and what better place could one otaku go other than Japan?!
The selection process began with an online test given in one of the LC(s), as usual, where they had IQ questions and some personality check questions. After shortlisting students from this test, they had kept a WebEx (just like skype) interview. The profile clearly mentioned what you needed to know and in my case it was just some high school level electrochemistry and obviously some core topics. So basically I had not prepared anything.
Obviously the journey starts with the flight to Japan. So once I am in Japan we (all 5 interns) are taken to the place of posting (hotel). There comes the interesting part, our first journey on a bullet train (they call it “shinkansen”). And since it is fast it doesn’t last long (like any good experience). We have been given a single room in a hotel near the station. This makes things easier since we use the local train (is much better than what it sounds like) everyday to the nearest station to the office where a bus comes to pick us up. We have been given a pass which we use for the train. In terms of food, we get the breakfast from the hotel itself and lunch from the office cafeteria. The only thing left is the dinner which we had decided and kind successfully are making it on our own. Thanks to one of our fellow interns who knows cooking and we are slowly learning few things from him (making infi mistakes but it is a good experience). Other than regular days where the above schedule is followed we usually go out accordingly have our food, like restaurants , vending machine, etc. One thing that you need to keep in mind is this place is a heaven if are a foodie and don’t have a problem with meat. They are a variety of sea food, meat, soup noodles available(I think they are called “ramen” at times kind of depends).
The first obstacle that one comes across is the language. Most of the people over here speak Japanese (again obviously) problem being even understanding English is difficult for them (google translate to the rescue). Once you are in the office there are few things that help you through this trouble, for example Indian seniors. But there are people who speak and or at least understand English. So somehow things like language barrier doesn’t affect that much.
As I had mentioned earlier,I am in the research and development profile. Specifically I am working on Li-ion batteries. There’s nothing more interesting to say but surely to do. We work only in the working hours, what I mean to say is that once we are out of the office we don’t even think about our work and our planning for weekend (and cooking) starts. We have made sure that every weekend we cover some part of Japan. Yeah initially we do mess things up but with experience you get the hang of time management and all sorts of things that are necessary for travelling. Another factor helping us (other than google) is there are no safety issues here. There are lot of places where one would want to go. Even if one has specific type of place like nature, completely developed, historical, night life, etc. you can get that. Here where comes one of the most interesting topic, that is people. People over here are too humble. However humble person you are you are not at the Japanese humbleness level. Like I don’t know how have they have got this, but every person here is humble maybe it’s the mixed influence of language, culture, ancestor etc. but they are great. Japanese culture is very different from ours (nothing new I said over here) but that’s what makes these people different and likable.
We are in Koriyama to be specific. This isn’t exactly the place where you can easily find LED screen on every other tall building. Though the place where we are in is relatively more developed. But overall this place is nature oriented. Things like natural hot springs (“onsen” as they say), hills, parks, lakes are like 1-2 hours away from us.
At different places you will find different kind of people who look different, work different and all but at the base level they still amazing. As said earlier they have a beautiful culture. This place is also great (a must visit if you are a travel loving person).
Other than awesome Japanese people, great location, interesting internship, great food, I would like to say this experience is second to none so I can hardly imagine a better internship than this.