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Graduate Research Assistant from the Department of Physics Enrichens His Auburn Experience with Six-Months in Japan

Published: 06/04/2019

By: Maria Gebhardt

Ahmad Nemer earned his master’s degree in Physics and as a Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) had the opportunity to spend six months working almost 7,000 miles away in Japan.

“I loved Japan,” said Ahmad. “It was a very fulfilling experience that I will always cherish.”

He was selected by the Department of Physics as this year’s Outstanding GRA. He spent six months conducting research in Japan on Synchrotron radiation collisional experiments.

“What I loved the most about Japan was the people,” he added. “After overcoming the barrier that very little people around you speak English, you start appreciating the little things. If I wanted to describe the culture in a phrase, it would be mindfulness of the others. All the public areas are superbly clean, talking on the phone in public is considered rude, and everyone follows the rules with very little control.”

As he prepares for his thesis defense, Discovery of enhanced recombination in astrophysical environments and the implications for plasma diagnostics, Ahmad reflects on what it was like to be part of the graduate assistantship program.

“The unexpected challenge I faced as a graduate research assistant was in the need to find a place for myself in the community before I can move on with my career,” Ahmad explained. “And that required me making connections with relevant people to my research, and looking for areas of research in need of skilled scientists.”

He will be making even more connections as he begins a new journey this fall with a postdoctoral position in New Jersey at Princeton University.  

“I am transitioning my research from atomic and molecular physics to astrophysics, which is my childhood dream, so I have a lot to learn and explore,” he said. “I am looking forward to the vibrant environment at Princeton and the intense exchange of ideas amongst young professionals.”

 

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