Through this blog, we will spotlight Otterbein students who are engaging in internships and professional experiences in a variety of industries and geographic locations. We will also share tips and advice on searching for internships and making the most of internship experiences.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Sarah Uhlenbrock '15--Harvard School of Public Health

Sarah Uhlenbrock
Class: 2015
Major(s): Allied Health, Religion
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Internship: Harvard School of Public Health
Location: Boston, MA

Internship Responsibilities: My month in Boston was spent working at the Harvard School of Public Health within the epidemiology department. Epidemiology is a branch of public health that studies the spread, causation, and prevention of diseases. Epidemiologists constantly work with large sets of data from surveys and conduct research. My research in Boston was focused on prostate cancer, specifically cadmium and prostate specific antigen (PSA).

PSA is a protein that is produced in the prostate and it is used a biomarker in men to detect early signs of prostate cancer. My research group and I asked this question: What is the effect of cadmium on PSA levels? We hypothesized that there would be a positive correlation between the PSA levels in the blood and cadmium which was measured in urine. To find our results we used the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). This is a biannual survey that uses a non-random sample of people to collect a national representative sample. We sorted through this data to find our two variables, PSA and cadmium, and then used R (a coding software to deal with the large amounts of numbers) to create spreadsheets and graphs. Our results were anticlimactic. We found no correlation between PSA levels and cadmium exposure.

What I Learned: Regardless of our null findings, the experience of working in the epidemiology department at HSPH was worth being stuck in the airport for six hours because of a flight cancellation. The experience enhanced my resume, but the opportunity of being in Boston was the best part. I fell in love with the city and I cannot wait to return to make it my home someday.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Eve Zielinski '15 --Safelite Autoglass

Eva Zielinski
Class Year: 2015
Major: Communications
Minor: Public Realtions
Hometown: Pickerington, Ohio
Internship: Safelite Autoglass
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Internship Responsibilities:  I began my experience as a communication intern for Safelite Autoglass at their corporate headquarters in Columbus, OH. My main task was to write content for our company intranet, newsletter publications and other internal communications. I was already a fair writer but I had to prioritize and effectively manage my time to ensure that I met deadlines and didn’t put anyone else behind schedule. I also had to be flexible and work around other peoples schedules other than my own in order to accomplish the tasks that were given to me. It was a necessary discipline that taught me to roll with change and adjust to becoming a professional young adult.

What I Learned: My experience lasted the entire summer from May through August and I was hired at full time from 9-5 every day. The first aspects of adult professionalism that I learned were to dress professionally and to be on time every day. I would wake up extra early to make the hour commute from Pickerington to Columbus/Dublin and back through rush hour traffic. I became efficient at learning to arrive early before my shift started.

I also had to get over my shyness of talking to people, because I had to interview several associates in person and over the phone to acquire the information I needed to compose a story. I learned to communicate more effectively in writing as well as spoken word with all my colleagues. However, I think the most important qualities I took away from this excellent experience were responsibility and flexibility. I was no longer just a college student writing essays for a grade, I was considered a professional that was part of a large organization that depended on the tasks I was working on.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Jill Keefer Internship Experience

Jill Keefer
Class: 2016
Major(s): Zoo & Conservation Science
Hometown: Chillicothe, OH
Internship: Aquatic Animal Husbandry intern through the WAVE Foundation at the Newport
Location: Newport, Kentucky

Internship Responsibilities: The creature that makes the Newport Aquarium so unique and special is the shark ray. Shark rays are incredibly rare in the wild, and my aquarium was the first one to successfully have them and start a breeding program. They're incredible creatures and I was lucky enough to feed them and help care for them!

What I Learned: My internship was the most incredible experience. I was able to pet penguins, hold a baby sea turtle, feed sharks and sharkrays, release albino alligators, and learn just what all it's like to work inside an aquarium. I learned so many things, and it only fueled my excitement more to join this career field one day! I definitely believe I had one of the coolest internships available. I did and learned so much, I can't wait to share my stories.