INTERNSHIP: Indian Space Research Organisation
INTERVIEWER: R. Saru Swetha Devi (GT)
INTERVIEWEES: L. Lasithasree, R. Dharshana (UG in Geo-Informatics, College of Engineering – Guindy, Batch of 2022)
GT: How did you get to know about the ISRO internship?
Dharshana: We got to know about this internship from our seniors. Our Purple and Orange tag seniors conducted meetings regarding the availability of internships, which gave us clear insights into the remote sensing and GIS sector.
Lasithasree: Our college faculty and seniors suggested several institutes and corporate companies we could intern at.
GT: How did you apply for this internship?
Lasithasree and Dharshana: The first steps were identifying the research institute of choice and getting the email ID from their website. Then we mailed them with a proper CV and cover letter and waited for their response.
GT: In your opinion, what are the skills an ISRO intern should have?
Dharshana: It is important to have hands-on experience with software GIS and QGis, which you could get through working on mini-projects. It also helps if you know programming languages like Python.
Lasithasree: You must be familiar with the basic concepts of remote sensing and GIS. ArcGIS, QGIS, Python, and R-coding are also helpful as they incorporate machine learning.
GT: If you are allowed to tell us, what was the project you were working on during your internship?
Lasithasree: We were working on a project called - Above ground Biomass Estimation using Remote Sensing and GIS. We used open-source satellite data with open source software like QGIS and Snap. Biomass estimating is quite popular in the agricultural field at the moment. As this can help compound the knowledge on climate change and the carbon cycle, there is always a need to research biomass.
Dharshana: Biomass estimation is extremely important in this department as it helps with understanding climate change and the carbon cycle. The conventional method of biomass estimation is groundtour, which has its limitations.
GT: Did this internship provide you with an opportunity to improve your knowledge and skills?
Dharshana: It certainly developed our skills and knowledge. This internship enhanced our remote sensing and GIS skills and encouraged us to experiment with new things. We thoroughly enjoyed our internship period.
Lasithasree: This internship was a great platform for us to improve our technical skills and helped mould us professionally in several ways.
GT: What were the challenging parts of this internship?
Lasithasree: As this internship was completely online, it was a completely new experience for us. Although it was initially difficult, we eventually learned to cope. Another challenge was that we were in different places and couldn’t work together, but we had conference calls and meetings to overcome these difficulties. Now, we are planning on expanding our project.
Dharshana: Since it was virtual, we faced many technical issues, but our guide S. Ramasubramaniyam was very student-friendly and helped us a lot.
GT: Any final thoughts on your experiences?
Dharshana: We had a wonderful experience in our ISRO internship. However, we did miss the in-person experience of the ISRO environment.
Lasithasree: Despite all obstacles, we were successfully able to complete our internship.
GT: What are your views on the Intern Diaries series?
Lasithasree: Intern Diaries has always been informative, and all students benefit from the information this series provides.
Dharshana: GT is doing a tremendous job of providing information to everyone with this series. This series definitely helps students explore opportunities they haven’t heard of before.
The Guindy Times thanks Lasithasree and Dharshana for sharing their experience and wishes them all the best for their future endeavours.