Centre College students who participated in internships during the summer recently shared their experiences at the Summer Internship Showcase, giving the campus community a forum to learn about the variety of opportunities in which they engaged across the globe.
This is the first of four internship showcases that occur throughout the academic year, highlighting internship experiences students hold in the summer, fall, CentreTerm and spring. Internships are part of the Centre Commitment, which guarantees an internship or mentored research experience, study abroad and graduation in four years.
“We had 62 students participate in the Summer Internship Showcase this year, which included students who received academic credit, internship funding, LIASE funding or participated in a Bonner summer of service,” said Mindy Wilson, associate director of the Center for Career & Professional Development.
While many other students participate in summer internships, the CCPD is only able to track those who receive funding, credit or are in special internship programs. This was the first year the Bonner summer of service students were included in the showcase.
“The ability for students to receive internship funding to support summer internships supports the opportunity for our students to take the next step in their academic career and in achieving their career goals,” Wilson added. “We appreciate all of the individuals and organizations who have generously supported our students over the years—this funding makes a real difference in the academic and professional lives of our students.”
Because of the Centre Commitment and the guarantee of an internship or research experience, students have the opportunity to intern in a variety of locations and for several different organizations.
Environmental science major Natalie Hagan ’20 (Versailles, Kentucky) interned in Dr. Camille Ragin’s lab in the Department of Cancer Prevention and Control at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia.
“As a research intern, I conducted qualitative study interviews to better understand racial disparities in different types of cancer, such as head and neck, lung and prostate cancer,” Hagan said. “I also collected and analyzed urine and saliva samples for single nucleotide polymorphisms between populations and metabolites produced by the body after using tobacco products. We focused on understanding how the environment, lifestyle and family history factors into cancer risk.”
Hagan said she plans to continue researching how socioeconomic factors affect healthcare in a future medical profession.
Jiaqi Wang ’20, a mathematics major from Shaanxi, China, interned at Huawei Technology Industries in Xi’an, China.
“It was an experience in a computing vision lab about optimizing the image-stitching method,” Wang explained. “I also quantified and analyzed the resulting image.”
This was the first experience Wang had with optimization by computer language, and he said he also learned a variety of concepts in the fields of computer vision.
Cole McCarson ’20 (Hendersonville, North Carolina) held an internship with the nuero-stroke division of the Neurology Department at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Throughout the summer, he worked on a stroke research project titled C3FIT, which is aiming to change the approach on stroke care in the post-stroke stage by following a patient for a year with a stroke mobile nurse and lay health educator. McCarson had the opportunity to shadow several clinicians of various specialties and ranks.
“This is something I would definitely do in the future,” he said. “I loved working at Vanderbilt; it was a great location to live in for the summer, and everyone I met there was incredibly helpful and genuinely nice.”
Wilson said she heard from several faculty and administrators that this group of students was quite impressive—from the experiences themselves to the quality of their presentations during the showcase.
“Our students always make a great impression and impact on the organizations they work with,” she concluded.
by Kerry Steinhofer
September 6, 2019