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Opportunity profile: Cern’s fellowships of the ring

Image: shellac [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Flickr

Cern’s early-career fellowships are highly prestigious, but getting one is more about showing willingness to learn than an unimpeachable track record, Katharine Thomas-Chevreux, Cern’s coordinator for the fellows programme, tells Ben Upton.

Katharine’s top tips

  • Choose your referees wisely; Cern wants letters from diverse professional and academics referees and is not interested in character references. 
  • Assessors pay attention to spelling and grammar.
  • No applicant is expected to already have the all the practical skills they will need during the fellowship—showing a willingness to learn them is more important.
  • Do not be put off by talk of “excellence” in Cern’s literature.

The European particle physics laboratory, Cern, seeks fellows for its popular programmes twice a year via four streams, only one of which is exclusively for theoretical and experimental physicists. The three other streams welcome computer scientists, engineers, materials scientists and the other early-career specialists needed to operate a particle accelerator.

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