Statement by MIPT Alumnus (01/2003)
The Physics Student admitted to Yale University, UC Santa Barbara

Applicant's Name: Ivan Ivanov       

Department and degree: Physics, PhD


What can be more interesting and exciting than the structure of the world surrounding us – the Nature? Physicists extract the most fundamental knowledge about Nature and make it serve the humankind. These aspects of being a physicist appealed to me since high school and are the major reason why I decided to be engaged in physics and entered Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology. While studying at MIPT I have chosen theoretical condensed matter physics as an area of specialization. Possibility to investigate microscopic properties of the world at macroscopic level is the issue that attracts me so much in this area in Physics.

I realize that research in theoretical physics is not an easy job nonetheless I think I have strong training and every quality to succeed.

I gained my first research experience as early as in high school, while participating in Young Physicist Tournament. This was a team competition that required a half-year everyday work on 17 problems that included experiments and theories far beyond the high school program. In the final round of All-Russian Tournament in xxx my team of 4 high school students took 1st place and represented our country at the International Young Physicist Tournament in City, Country, getting back with diploma of Excellent Performance.

Due to my victories in Physics Olympiads of different levels I was admitted to Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology without a requirement to pass entrance exams. There I spent 3.5 years in very competitive surrounding of best Former Soviet Union physics students. Although I am in average 1 year younger than other senior students, I always wanted to be on top. I studied a lot independently and my self-organization and interest helped me succeed. At the end of the first year I became and remained strong A -student.

During the xxxx/xxxx academic year I was also a student at the Institute for Theoretical and Experimental Physics (ITEP, Moscow), specializing in elementary particles. There I became acquainted with principles of Quantum Field Theory which has impressed me by its profoundness and beauty. At that time I made a firm decision to specialize in theory. However I realized, that pure high energy physics has little connection with “real” life. Thus I have chosen condensed matter physics to be my major, as an area where ideas and methods of QFT have brilliant application.

In spring xxxx I successfully passed “Landau Theoretical Minimum” Qualifying exam on Quantum Mechanics to Prof. X and was admitted to the theory group at Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics (ITP Landau). Among problems that I solved to pass that exam were energy levels of a roton in an oscillatory and Coulomb potential and hydrogen atom levels in high magnetic field.

My specialization in condensed matter physics at Landau Institute has begun this year. By June xxxx I will complete one year of courses there. Now I study lattice dynamics and theory of metals. I also attend weekly seminar on modern condensed matter physics, which helps me to learn more about current "hot" topics and trends in the field. Not long ago I myself presented a review on xxxx. While preparing the report I studied several articles (from PRL and RMP) about xxx.  These areas became of interest to me.

Currently I am involved in a research project under the guidance of Prof. X. My problem is connected with xxx. I am investigating xxxx. Soon we will prepare an article with our results.

Since high school I got used to work in cooperation. Today collaborative work is an essential of my study and research at Landau theory group. I frequently and fruitfully discuss various questions with a number of professors, students and graduates.


Now being 19 years old and getting B.S. in Physics from MIPT in June xxxx I have serious intention to continue my education at the graduate level. Princeton University attracts me by its strong theoretical condensed matter group. I believe that studying at Princeton University would be a good chance for me to get a thorough education and great research experience and to become eventually a researcher in theoretical physics.

Ivan Ivanov

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