Feedback from former students

“Studying in three different universities, each with its own approach enriched my knowledge in a unique way. Thanks to the Europhotonics Master program I had an opportunity to learn and work in some of the leading research institutions in the field of photonics. The experience of doing master thesis in one of the Europhotonics institutions was so good that I continued with my PhD in the same topic and same research group. Complementary to achieving scientific milestones, it was a great pleasure to meet students from all parts of the world, study and live with them for two years.”
Ivan Supic (Montenegro) graduated in 2014

“As a former Europhotonics Master Program student, first I would like to say that it is my fortune to participate Europhotonics Master Program. The Pro of this program is obvious: for young students who want to start their career in optics&photonics related field, this program can provide almost all you need (apposite courses, constructive trainings, various internships, social network in this community and etc.…). However, participating in this program is also a challenging journey. Culture shocks, homesickness, language barriers troubled me when I moved to a new destination. Some courses seem difficult when they are not so intimate to my previous educations. Those points can always be classified as “Cons”, but I would not say so now. I am appreciated for those experiences, they just like catalysis for the growing of a young man. In fact, people may have a lot of feelings after those two years’ journey, but I believe none of them would be “I have waste my two years’ valuable young time”. And for me, those are one of my best two years!”
Qingfeng Li (China) graduated in 2015

“First of all, I would like to express my gratitude to the European Agency and to the coordinator for having been selected for such an amazing Master’s programme! Thanks to it I had the opportunity to grow character-wise and skill-wise. Although the main attention was drawn to our curriculum duties, we also have gained a lot in terms of intercultural, multinational relations amongst us. Such an experience has the power to change personality once and for ever. Besides, with such a great financial support we could study, travel and live without any interruption and/or constraint. I remember myself applying for the programme – with above average English, good grades but without practical skills, basically without any external financial support from my family. Though they couldn’t help me much with money, since we live in a small village in Ukraine, and we are just an ordinary family. With this little start position I’d estimated my chances quite low to get into. However, the miracle happend! At that time it was really a marvel, I couldn’t believe the words I was reading from the email from the coordinator. Three years have passed, and I managed to finish the Europhotonics programme with good scores. We even published a video based on the results of my master’s thesis in the first scientific video-journal JOvE. Now we develop a nonlinear endoscope in Institut Fresnel. If somebody had told me all of this three years ago, I would have never ever believed a word of his! Miracles happen! We just have to work a bit to help them become true.”
Vasyl Mytskaniuk (Ukraine) graduated in 2015

“I feel very privileged to have been part of the Europhotonics experience. Worth all the organisational efforts.”
Niklas Gerdes (Germany) graduated in 2015

“It is my great pleasure to write few words on Europhotonics program and team. Perhaps, I can’t thank enough for accepting me in their organization, offering the fellowship and allowing to educate myself under their state-of-the-art facilities. Specially, I am grateful for providing a strong background of optics that facilitated the working process in every aspect of my career so far. In addition, it was a lifetime learning experience of different culture, language, food, and academic training that I will cherish for rest of my life. Finally, my deepest gratitude goes to Nadège, Sophie, Hugues from Marseille, and Uli, Miriam from Karlsruhe for their warm welcome, friendly gestures and continuous support to settle in so easily in Europe. I wish all the best to whole team to keep enlightening us with next-generation technologies of optics and photonics!”
Radwanul Siddique (Bangladesh) graduated in 2012

“Europhotonics offers a great combination of prestigious institutions and scholars which all together cover almost every aspect of photonics. Whether you want to look at the stars or at the most fundamental aspects of light, Marseille, Karlsruhe, and Barcelona will have a scientist, a group, an industrial partner, and/or the facilities for you to study and research what you have always wanted—not before having shown you a bit of each. This is the top advantage I found from this Erasmus Mundus program from the professional aspect. Furthermore, the level of the institutions and the good reputation of the program means that a Master degree from Europhotonics will definitely boost your career and open up many doors to academia, industry, entrepreneurship, etc.”
Carlos Rios Ocampo (Colombia) graduated in 2013

“Europhotonics is not a common Master program. I believe Europhotonics shapes individuals into the true European scholar, as Erasmus from Rotterdam would have wrote: “in my opinion it is wiser to treat men and things as though we held this world the common fatherland of all”. This program exposes students to not only academic but also social life in up to 5 different european countries. The richness which derives from such a comparative lifestyle is huge. Students can learn the strengths and shortcomings of each country they visit. They learn also to create links, to become friends with everyone in the world, a key factor in scientific collaborations. Besides learning Photonics from experts in their fields and top-notch institutions, they are faced with challenges which no other student staying at their own university for their whole career faces. This enormously heightens their problem solving skills and opens their brain to curiosity and creativity. This Master has shaped me in so many different ways and to such deep extent, it will leave a constant trace in my future, within or outside of Photonics.
To the future students, what I suggest is not to be afraid of the new and scary places. Living in countries where you don’t understand the language and you are alone is terrifying, one can be caught up in the bureaucracy, but the organisers of the masters are always available and extremely helpful in solving any issue. I strongly advise you not to lock yourself up in your room and simply study all the time – you can do that from your country after all! Instead get out, study in groups, make friends, learn languages and cooking recipes, you’ll come out a wholesome and interesting person!”
Chiara Decaroli (Italy) graduated in 2016

“I’ve had a very special relationship with the Europhotonics programme. One that has been cemented by the kindness and painstaking efforts of the organizers to leave no stone unturned in ensuring that I made the most out of it. It has, without a doubt, been the most formative experiences of my life. For having taught me everything I know about optics, for setting the stage for a career in science and for showing me that the best experiences are outside of where you expect them to be. What this Master programme can give you is so much more than the title. While the title in itself is prestigious, given that you meet the who’s who in the field and learn from the Masters themselves, it also throws open the chance to meet people from all over the world and to hone your scientific skills in more places than one.
I found the best version of myself in the corridors of these institutions. Would I do it all over again? A resounding yes! Such opportunities don’t knock on your door twice.”
Aditi Srinivasa Raja (India) graduated in 2015

“You can think of Europhotonics as an illness, a disease. Once you are infected you will experience severe personal and professional development. Each new city you will study at will transform you. You will experience two years of intense personal and professional growth which will leave a life-long marks on you. It might include: open-mind, friendliness, self-confidence, independence, broad and deep understanding of photonics, experience in industry and academia, wide career choices and enterpreneurship skills. You will be one of us, roaming the planet Earth with a sign of Europhotonics clearly visible since the first ‘Hello’.”
Justinas Pupeikis (Lithuania) graduated in 2015

“Europhotonics-POESII changed my life. I experienced a severe improvement as a person and as a professional. I had the opportunity to interact with very skilled and talented people from all over the world. Every person I met, enlarged my mindset about reality, identity and diversity. This master gave me a broad perspective about how photonics is developing in Europe. We visited different countries, universities, research labs, even companies and we received lectures with very qualified professors. We developed personal and technical qualities to face the challenges of being a professional in a globalized world.
I am deeply grateful with all the administrative team behind this program and to the A*MIDEX foundation in France to support my master. You allowed my education. Merci beaucoup! Vielen Dank! Thank you! Gracias!
To the new people: This is a beautiful full-time and challenging experience which will be drawn with your own colors and personality. Do not forget to have good interactions with your colleagues, you will struggle together during the process and become closer together. Live your own experience, think in solutions instead of problems, keep improving, keep rolling. It is worth it.”
Leidy Marcela Giraldo (Colombia) graduated 2016

“I think every Europhotonics edition is very different and every student has a very individual story and place of this program in his/her life. For me this master was one of the most hard, challenging and changing experiences in my life, full of its ups and downs. And if I could go back in time and make the decision about participating in the master once again I would repeat it. Living in several cities, all having their own strong individualities, in several different countries with different education approaches, being part of an international group with students originating from diverse cultures – this all helps (or sometimes forces) you to discover a lot about the World, people and about yourself.
The program also gives you all the possibilities to gain a strong background in order to proceed your career in any direction of the Photonics science you prefer.”
Diana Davydovkaya (Russia) graduated in 2015

“Some common features of Europhotonics-POESII program that everyone would mention are outstanding learning opportunity, diversity, networking, individual growth and so on. To me it’s an unique platform which helps widen your vision, broadens your heart, encourages you to be more cosmopolitan and tolerant to the cultural differences, and most importantly cajole you to dream for greater beyond your limitations. If you are agile, amiable, and inquisitive you may discover opportunities you have never imagined of. I wish every success for this program and its participants, which has significantly revitalized my life today.”
Md Shofiqul Islam Khan (Bangladesh) graduated 2016

“On a personal level, I regard Erasmus Mundus Europhotonics-POESII as ‘not any ordinary master program’ but an elite collaboration of excellence and interdisciplinary research institutes that provided a perfect setup to hone my skills and improve my understanding of the subjects pertaining to Optics & Photonics. Besides, with the fertile ground of cross-cultural intellectuals and under the guidance of one of the best teachers and mentors in the given field, this program presented a great source to gain new insights from new approaches around. Europhotonics-POESII master is a result of tenacious efforts of supportive and kind organizers who are readily available to students in the time of need. I heartily thank all the members of the organizing committee for immense help with academic as well as administrative issues at several instances. Last but not the least, I express my sincere gratitude to European taxpayers for funding my two years of learning expedition.
To the prospective students, I would say that though it is a bumpy ride, nonetheless, this rigorous program will induce pivotal attributes such as meticulous thinking, a knack to see problems from various angles, and numerous soft skills that are imperative for a swift transition to academia as well as industry.”
Alok Pandey (India) graduated in 2017