Stephanie Shao - D.C.

Stephanie Shao

Internship location: National Institutes of Health, North Bethesda, Md.
Career goal: I hope to further immerse myself in public health research and practice in order to improve cancer prevention and detection efforts

Internship summary:
This summer I worked in the Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG) where I investigated the role that dietary quercetin plays in lung carcinogenesis to better understand underlying molecular pathways that are influenced by dietary factors during cancer development. In addition to presenting a poster at the annual DCEG summer poster session, I provided support in the statistical analysis of EAGLE data, conducted a literature review and began the write-up of the paper. I also participated in and organized summer intern activities within the institute and joined the DCEG journal club, which met bimonthly to discuss epidemiologic methods and study designs of current research.

Value of experience:
Interning at the NIH this summer was a great and unique opportunity to explore epidemiologic research in public health. I gained valuable insight into dietary components as a mediating factor of cancer development and applied epidemiologic methods, design and analysis to a real public health issue. Collaborating with experts aided in my abilities to perform and evaluate the progress of my project this summer as well as learn important problem-solving and decision-making skills. Overall, it was a truly amazing learning experience that allowed me to utilize core public health competencies that will prepare me for future endeavors.

Best moment:
The most rewarding aspect of my internship was presenting a poster at the end of the summer that nicely summarized the significance, goals and findings of my project.