Interview with Sumit from IITG: Working in Korea with Samsung

Samsung electronics is one of the top most electronics company in the world. From home appliances to next generation multimedia devices, Samsung has made a mark in all such fields.Every year thousands of computer science/ electronics under-graduates from elite engineering colleges across the world aspire to join the company through the highly selective Samsung Global Scholarship Program (GSP). This program is designed for talented students willing to obtain the Master of Sciences (MSc) Degree in Electronics and Computer Sciences. The educational program is held at the Seoul National University (South Korea) and lasts 2 years. After graduation, the GSP-SNU student works for Samsung Electronics in South Korea for 2 additional years.

HireTale team brings to you an exclusive interview of one of the GSP-Scholars – Sumit Srivastava from IIT Guwahati, who made it to the final list of 4 students selected for Samsung – GSP Program and has been working in Samsung Korea for the last 4 years after completing his MS.

1. Can you describe the complete selection procedure for Samsung- GSP?

 The selection procedure basically consists of 3 rounds. The first round is conducted when Samsung visits individual colleges for placement. This round will focus extensively on your technical skills in fields of electronics. Your B-tech project is very important as a lot of questions will be asked on it. They will try to assess your knowledge base in the area you have decided to pursue in MS. In my case a lot of questions were asked from the field of signal and image processing as I had decided to apply for MS in this field. Questions are progressively difficult in nature. They will first ask relatively simple question to temper your nerves. However the questions will keep on becoming difficult and practical problems that Samsung engineers face in everyday work will also be asked.

The second round is held at Samsung’s Bangalore office. This round is primarily an HR round. They want to assess your ability to adapt to a completely different culture and how well you adapt to such a scenario. They also want to see if you are ready to have a commitment of 2 years for Samsung electronics after completing your MS program – basically a personality assessment round to understand your sense of value and proportion in everyday life.

The third round is held in Delhi where engineers from Samsung HQ in Korea and Professors from Seoul National University are present. At this stage you are required to make a presentation about your past and future research area. This is the toughest round and you can expect some very challenging technical questions at this stage. They might even ask to prove some of the mathematical constructions you have used in your research. So a thorough analysis of your research area is absolutely essential. Final selection for the program depends upon selection at this stage.

2. What was the toughest question you encountered and how did you answer it?

 As the questions are asked in sequence of increasing difficulty you might expect the last question to be the most difficult. I had made a proposal for my future research during my MS program and one professor asked me to do a feasibility analysis and prove that my goals were mathematically possible. I had to start from first principles of signal analysis and step by step I showed them that my aim were not mathematically impossible. The professors were very helpful and very ready to provide their help if I got stuck at some point. Basically they wanted to assess my problem solving methodology and my competency in field of signal processing.

4. Apart from Samsung-GSP, can you tell us about the application process for companies like Samsung?

The application process mainly involves 3 distinct approaches. For fresh graduates, on-campus placement is the preferred route. For experienced employees they also have off campus drives and also a referral program where an employee can refer his friend to Samsung HR.

5. Can you talk about your preparation for the 3 rounds of Samsung-GSP?

A very thorough and exhaustive study of your future research field is a must. You must be fully aware of the current trends and the latest problem solving techniques for the problem you want to explore during your MS studies. You must also brush upon your knowledge of applied mathematics as questions involving mathematical analysis are certainly going to be asked.

6. What were some important factors according to you that made you stand out?

Basically a good temperament to explore complex problems in engineering and some luck will get you through the day.

7. You have worked in Samsung electronics for 4 years now. Can you tell us something about the experience?

It has been a very rewarding and a wonderful experience. Besides the challenge of working on cutting edge problems, you get to interact with a global workforce consisting of people from all around the world. You get to know about business principles of different cultures and how to handle cross cultural differences successfully. All the best to everyone applying.

Sumit Srivastava: Author is Lead Design Engineer with Samsung Electronics, Korea. He has 6+ years of vast experience in Signal processing & high speed computing. He has completed his B.Tech from IIT Guwahati and MS from Seoul National University (South Korea).


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