Etna Tiburcio - Manglaralto, Ecuador

Manglaralto, Ecuador

Career goal: Improve the health of Latino communities through education and empowerment.

Internship outline: Etna planned and implemented a research project on levels of food insecurity along the coastal region of Ecuador with a team of Yale College students. The goal was to examine the association between household food insecurity with food groups consumed and health status. The clinic hopes the research will give them a better understanding of the manner in which food insecurity affects health and nutrition in the community.

Value of experience: Planning and implementing the research project allowed me to have first-hand experience with the obstacles that arise when conducting research abroad. Not only was it challenging to create a research project that would best serve a community that was foreign to me, but once created it was necessary to make tweaks to both the language and protocol in order to carry out a successful project. Working with clinic staff who are well known and respected by the community allowed for the research to be a success. Not only was I able to put the concepts and skills I had learned in class into practice, but I was also able to witness the importance of building strong relationships.

Best moment/experience: Using my language and culture to build relationships with people who were surveyed.

Funding source: Overlook International Fund Fellowship