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  • Writer's pictureMirka Karra

FACES #23 with Merkourios Simos, Data Scientist Intern from EPFL

Visual with Merkourios Simos, data scientist internn from EPFL at NET2GRID in Greece

Hailing from the prestigious École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Merkourios is one of our talented interns from this summer’s NET2GRID intern cohort. In this interview, we delve into Merkourios's journey and we give him the floor to share his insights and takeaways from NET2GRID’s internship program, which is offering a platform for young graduates to grow while contributing to a more sustainable energy future.

1. Can you tell us about your background studies and what attracted you to this internship opportunity?

I graduated from the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering of Aristotle University two years ago. After completing my military service I joined the Life Sciences Engineering master’s program at EPFL, in Lausanne, where I’ve now completed my first year of studies. As an undergraduate, I was fascinated by the notion of information and how it flows through networks, be it physical or artificial. I like to consider the human mind as the pinnacle of information processing, which is why I’m now trying to apply my technical background to the fast-evolving field of neuroscience.

I’ve known NET2GRID since my time at Aristotle University, and I consider it a true trailblazer when it comes to cultivating new talent and invigorating the tech landscape of Thessaloniki. Having the opportunity to join this company as an intern and work on a fascinating hands-on project, while sharpening my technical skills, led me to apply for this position, and I’m certainly glad that I did!

2. Could you share an example of a project or task you've worked on at NET2GRID that has contributed to your growth as an engineer?

During my time at NET2GRID, I worked on a research project that has the potential to be introduced as a real product. That was a novel and exciting experience for me, and it gave me a new perspective on what it means to innovate while staying true to your primary goals. I saw how important it is to maintain a direct relationship with prospective clients and communicate your contributions while listening to their needs, and I will make sure to employ these principles in my future steps as an engineer and researcher.

3. You mentioned conducting your MA at EPFL, which is located in Switzerland. How did you find out about NET2GRID and its internship opportunities, considering your studies are based abroad? In your opinion, what sets NET2GRID apart from other companies when it comes to attracting and nurturing talent through its internship program?

NET2GRID is certainly no stranger to engineering graduates in Thessaloniki, and many top students in my class are currently working there; that’s how I knew that it would make a fine choice for my internship. At the same time, I could not pass up the opportunity to spend the summer in my home country, close to friends and family, while continuing to advance my career in a meaningful way. NET2GRID certainly gave me the flexibility to find my own work-life balance, and I think it is unique in providing an ideal mix of friendliness and incentive for me to evolve as an engineer and as an individual.

4. How do you see your experience at NET2GRID contributing to your future career goals in the field of electrical engineering, especially in the context of life sciences engineering?

When working with real data, no matter their particular nature, there are certain guidelines one must follow to ensure that whatever comes out of them will be accurate and useful. My experience at NET2GRID has really helped me to be methodical and responsible when handling data, and this certainly extends to the field of life sciences.

5. If your electrical engineering skills could magically solve any everyday problem, what would be the first issue you'd tackle?

My dream is to one day understand the inner workings of the brain and unlock what we call human consciousness. However, the terrible natural disasters of the past few weeks have reminded me that we are facing an immense existential challenge in climate change. There is no planet B, and if my engineering skills had any magic in them, I would spend it all to save our ecosystem and ensure that the true magic of nature will be safe for generations to come.

Would you like to see the available internship positions? Follow the link here.


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