Letter of Recommendation for MIPT Alumnus (01/1994)
The Physics Student admitted to Yale University
I have known Ivan Ivanov for more than 4
years. In 1989 I was the leader of the USSR International Physics
Olympiad Team. Among other winners of the USSR Olympiad Ivan Ivanov took
part in winter (two weeks) and summer (one month) sessions of the team.
The sessions included advanced lectures on physics; seminars devoted to
theoretical problems and intensive laboratory courses were alternated
with frequent rounds of problems solving contests designed to reduce the
number of candidates from 15 to 5.
From the very beginning Ivan demonstrated his outstanding knowledge of physics , although he lacked some necessary experimental skills. Despite the spirit of competition that was present at the sessions Ivan easily communicated with other members of the team , managing to learn much from his fellows as well as help them with their difficulties. At the Olympiad itself , that was held in Warsaw, Ivan made one of the best experiments (19.25 points out of 20), which represented remarkable progress he made in 5 months. He also did well in theoretical part of the contest, rating 8th of 150 participants from more than 30 countries. His has the only gold medal retained by our team. I should add here that Ivan displayed surprising fluency in English, acting as an informal interpreter between our students and participants from other countries.
Since 1990 Ivan Ivanov has been participating in the sessions of the succeeding IPhO teams as an instructor. His help in correcting students' papers and conducting laboratory classes was very valuable to us. I was delighted at his ability to capture students' interest regardless of whether he is giving a lecture or taking part in an informal discussion. As I feel, Ivan is one of the people who enjoy teaching. His commitment was formally recognized in the beginning of 1992, as he was elected to the Board of the last USSR Physics Olympiad in Moscow.
I had too little time to discuss with Ivan his recent work at Kurchatov Institute of Atomic Energy and his latest achievements in studying physics at MIPT, but taking into account my knowledge of Ivan Ivanov as a brilliant, perseverant and intelligent student, I feel confident about his ability to realize his undoubtedly huge potential.
I highly recommend Ivan Ivanov for graduate study at University of Pennsylvania.
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