Summer internships for undergraduate students on abstract interpretation
Prof. Patrick COUSOT
The abstract interpretation group at the École normale supérieure (ENS) receives each year between 50 and 100 requests of undergraduates students seeking for summer internships (May-July).
Most applications are rejected because
Abstract interpretation requires advanced competences in mathematics and computer science;
Three months is too short for an average beginner to obtain any significant result in the area of abstract interpretation.
So in general, these applications remain unanswered, even after several reminders.
The only exception is when:
The applicant is in a well-known department of mathematics or computer science;
The applicant's record is demonstrably exceptional (1);
The transcript of the marks of the applicant during his or her undergraduate
studies is attached to the application;
The applicant provides a summary of one page (A4/US letter, 11 pt) describing what he or she knows on abstract interpretation at the date of application and what will be known on arrival in Paris;
The applicant provides a one page (A4/US letter, 11 pt) description of the contribution he or she expects to do during his or her 3 month intership on abstract interpretation at ENS;
The applicant provides a personalized letter of recommendation of one of his or her professors at his or her institution in the field of formal methods or a contributor of their country to abstract interpretation, explaining which contribution he or she can make in the research team of ENS (this should include emails and telephone numbers so that the recommendees can be personally contacted). This letter should preferably be sent separately.
The applicants will not receive any answer if the above conditions are
not all fulfilled satisfactorily.
Because the selection criteria are very severe and can only concern exceptionally brilliant individuals, the applicants who will be selected, if any,
will be fully
supported financially (including travel, accomodation and living expenses in Paris) for their intership (2), and moreover
if the results of the interships are truly excellent, the possibility of preparing a PhD in the project will be discussed and adequate support provided.
The administrative formalities may be long for some citizenships, in particular for visas, and so applications should be received well in advance. Here are
useful links to prepare your visit.
The members of the abstract interpretation group occasionally propose
short research subjects which are well-suited for a 3 month internship.
For example the french students who are graded TB (Très Bien), with marks average over 18/20 or the students from the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT Bangalore, IIT Bombay, IIT Dehli, IIT Guwahati, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Kanpur, IIT Madras, IIT Roorkee) who have a GPA greater than or equal to 90.
Except for the students who already have grants from the French government.