**
Statement by MIPT Alumnus (01/2003)
The Physics Student admitted to MIT, Princeton, Berkeley, Stanford**

Statement of Objectives
Applicant's name: Ivan Ivanov

Department and Degree: Physics, PhD

When I was a tenth-grade high school student, I used to always ask my
teachers: "Why do different branches of physics seem so unrelated? They
must be similar to each other!", but they didn't appear to be interested
in the question. I believed that I was the only person trying to find
the answer until I got acquainted with a professor of theoretical
physics at XX University. He told me that analogies between different
areas of physics do exist and that many scientists are exploring them. I
cannot forget my excitement when I talked to him and found that I wasn't
alone in my attempts to solve the puzzle. Since then every step in my
life brings me closer to the answer.

In 1998 I entered Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT). As
a winner of XXIX International Physics Olympiad in Reykjavik, where I
received Gold medal and a special prize for the best solution of a
theoretical problem, I was admitted without entrance exams. There, in
addition to a thorough standard course of study, I have taken a number
of elective advanced physics and math courses. One of my hobbies was to
solve complicated non-standard problems in physics, calculus and group
theory. I also attended advanced lectures on topology and differential
geometry at Independent University of Moscow. My hard work paid off: in
2000 I earned the highest score in MIPT's Physics and Mathematics
Olympiads among all 2100 undergraduates of MIPT.

At the same time I gained my first research experience: I proved a
theorem of high importance in calculus regarding Whitney's extension
problem and my results were published in Mathematical Notes, one of the
top Russian mathematical journals.

I spent my 3rd year at the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental
Physics specializing in particle physics. I actively participated in
weekly seminars on gravity and quantum field theory (QFT). I especially
enjoyed making presentations on topics such as instantons in modern QFT,
entropy of black holes, and conformal field theory.

I was fascinated by beautiful mathematical constructions of QFT and
string theory, but I also became interested in deep interconnections
between QFT and Condensed Matter physics. In order to get to the bottom
of these interconnections, I decided to deepen my knowledge of Condensed
Matter theory. Therefore in September 2001 I joined the theory group at
the Landau Institute and spent my 4th year there. It was the most
interesting year of my studies at MIPT as the requirements at the Landau
Institute are extremely high. For instance, in order to pass the exam on
Diagrammatic Techniques, I solved about fifty complex problems such as
finding quantum correction to the conductivity of two-dimensional system
with the help of diagrammatic methods.

Problems involving a combination of both High Energy and Condensed
Matter Physics are of special interest to me, for example, quantum Hall
effect, superconductivity, and modeling of cosmological phenomena in
condensed matter systems. My Bachelor's thesis called "Even denominator
Hall states" was in the field of fractional Hall effect. There I
described the analogies between Moore-Read Pfaffian state and liquid
helium. Currently I am working on a research project under the guidance
of Prof. X. We are exploring properties of fermion zero-modes living on
vortices in unusual superconductors.

During my years at MIPT I have acquired research experience not only in
Condensed Matter, but also in QFT. About a year ago I met a graduate
student who was working on asymptotically free theories. Soon we became
collaborators. We have developed some aspects of principal chiral field
model and are currently preparing a paper for submission to JETP
Letters.

I am convinced that I should continue my education at Massachusetts
Institute of Technology. First, I would like to get more experience with
superconductivity and quantum Hall efect. Research in these areas is
very active at Condensed Matter group of MIT. Study of strongly
correlated systems by Prof. Lee, Prof. Wen and Prof. Levitov is of
particular interest to me. Second, MIT High Energy group is also
extremely strong. I believe that communication with such experts would
be priceless for my education.

I am confident that graduate study at Massachusetts Institute of
Technology would be a great step towards my goal and the experience
gained at MIT will allow me someday to get to the core of connections
between different branches of Physics.

Ivan Ivanov