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Clara Bachorz - LMU Munich, MPQ
1. Briefly describe your current position, research focus, and your role within MCQST.
I work as a PhD student at LMU, and my research group focuses on simulating lattice gauge theories with ultracold Ytterbium atoms. I am affiliated with LMU and the MPQ, under the Quantum Many-Body Systems division.
2. Could you please describe your experiences as a PhD student from abroad?
Moving from the UK for my PhD has been an excellent decision, as it has allowed me to witness different approaches to research, and work cultures. I have learnt a lot about physics and research, thanks to my colleagues and to my supervisor. Even though starting a PhD in Germany without speaking German has had its own sets of challenges, the work environment is very international, which has been a great help to settle in. I have also been very well supported by the MPQ, which has allowed me to learn German alongside my research.
On the leisure part of life, Munich is an exciting city, which has much to offer- not to mention the nearby Alps. There are many opportunities to unwind after a long week of research!
Even though starting a PhD in Germany without speaking German has had its own sets of challenges, the work environment is very international, which has been a great help to settle in.
3. Why did you choose your field of research/what keeps you motivated?
What I love about the research field I'm in is the diversity of skills required. My colleagues and I often alternate between building optics, becoming a one-day electrical engineer or plumber, writing software or working on developing the theory behind our experiment, to give a few examples. There are no typical lab days, and there is a lot to learn. Additionally, our experiments allow us to probe systems that are challenging to understand, even for theoretical physicist. There are many fascinating questions to try and answer, and this pursuit is what keeps me motivated.