When I had to choose the group to do my Bachelor thesis in, I did not have to think very long before I decided I wanted to do my research at the Nanophotonics group. I had previously interned there for 4-5 weeks, and had already learned how hands-on their research was. This was a very welcome change from the theoretical courses, and turned out to be an excellent opportunity for me to learn experimental research skills.
Because the research done by the Nanophotonics group is so practical, you encounter wholly different problems than you’re used to. Instead of busying yourself with specific theoretical problems, you’re reverse-engineering your setup to find out what does and what doesn’t work. It’s really fun to puzzle your way through your research and see your setup finally work the way it should.
My own Bachelor research was concerned with finding a link between surface charge and flow rate in a microfluidic channel. What I really liked about this was that it wasn’t a small part of the research of a PhD candidate, as is often the case, but rather my own research. It felt extra rewarding working on your own research and seeing it finished after half a year.
I really enjoyed my time working on my thesis here, and even though I’ll do the theoretical Master here at Utrecht, I’m glad I chose to write an experimental thesis. In my opinion, it’s important for every physicist to have a foundation of both theoretical and experimental knowledge.
Lorenzo Sierra Perez, Bachelor's student Physics