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IGERT's first International Internship


In 2008, Meghan Schulz was our first IGERT fellow to participate in an International Internship. During the summer session, she spent six weeks in summer 2008 interning in the Functional Materials Lab (FML) at GE’s China Technology Center (CTC) in Shanghai, China.

Funding from the NSF grant (specific to international internships) provides the IGERT students with this opportunity to expand their research and interests. It also allows them to diversify their skills and utilize them in an international market. The hope is that they can use the information to enhance their research as well as their communication and interpersonal skill set.

It also allowed the other IGERT students the opportunity to realize that the internships were a very real part of the IGERT Fellowship award and that it was something they should seriously consider participating in.

Meghan has been featured on both the NSF website at on the Live Science website at and has also been featured in UDaily, the university online newspaper.

Address Goals

Being able to work in an international environment gave Meghan the chance to expand her scientific literacy. She was warmly welcomed into the culture and work environment of GE and enjoyed interacting with a wide range of scientists, researchers and technicians. The fact that she was able to develop these skills in a different environment enabled her to realize the importance of an inclusive science and engineering workforce.

Meghan mentioned how important it was for the IGERT students to participate in these internships as it helped her realize the bigger scope of her research and how everybody is working towards a common goal – finding a sustainable answer to the depleting non-renewables in this world.

Being able to work with like minded individuals in China also enabled her to realize how important it was to work with people from different cultures towards a common goal. Sometimes by working together, you discover more and foster research that furthers the participating parties knowledge.