Summer opportunities for Public Health epidemiology students

20140602_174707Summer is truly here: an exhibit of lost gloves collected throughout the winter

Our first academic year is over! There is still more to write about how the end of the year wrapped up, but I thought I would share some of the ways that my fellow students are kicking off their summer. In Sweden, students have more than 2.5 months of holiday in June, July, and August, so there is plenty of time to do a variety of things over the summer. Our program does not arrange internships for students, but a number of students did arrange some sort of internship or project related to our studies on their own. That being said, other students are working to earn some money or just taking a break. It’s nice that the choice is ours! The following paragraphs are some samples of summer plans from my fellow classmates that I’ve collected to give you an idea of what is possible if you take the initiative to find an internship or project:

Internship at a consultancy firm
“I will be interning at the Stockholm branch of an international health economics data consultancy firm. I will be working on a variety of projects for which I will be putting to use my prior research and field experience as well as the epidemiological and statistical tools I gained from KI’s courses. It will involve many tasks including data analysis and even perhaps a literature review. It will give me an exciting perspective as to how my newly gained knowledge will be used in the real world. Additionally, the internship is compensated, which is certainly appreciated.”

Internship at an NGO
“This summer I will be working for an NGO in Uganda alongside two other global master’s students from Karolinska. The NGO works with many prevalent public health issues, such as HIV and maternal and child health. I will mostly work in the head office but I will also have the opportunity to travel to more rural areas where many of the projects are run. I’m looking forward to gaining more insight into public health work in a low-income setting, and I hope to get some ideas for a possible thesis project next year.”

University research abroad
“During the summer break, I will first travel in Sweden for a while before I go home to Germany to do an internship at the University of Ulm department for public mental health. One of the professors is doing research on stigma of mental diseases, a really interesting and exciting topic. If everything goes well, I’m planning to write my master’s thesis there as well. After I read about his research projects, I contacted the professor and asked him about potential master’s thesis/Ph.D. positions. We exchanged some e-mails, and skyped once, and he offered me an internship over the summer so that we can get to know each other and figure out if working together goes well. During the internship, we will start to write a paper that I could potentially use as a start for my master’s project. I’m very much looking forward to the next few months; I think lots of exciting things are waiting for me.”

University research at KI
“At the last minute, I found a summer internship at the Institutet för miljömedicin (IMM) at Karolinska Institutet. I will be supervised by a postdoc working there. Over the next two months, I will mainly work on a publication about vitamin D supplements for which she already obtained some data. If time allows it, I will work with data cleaning and might be deployed wherever I am needed.”

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