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NIH Clinical Center Radio

TRAINING THE NEXT GENERATION: "Discovering the Summer Internship Program"

Uploaded: August 22, 2011
Running time: 02:45

CROWN: From the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland: Hello, and welcome to this episode in the series "Training the Next Generation."

Growing up in a large Hispanic family in Los Angeles, Marina Sanchez-Cardenas said she wasn't encouraged to go to college. But she always knew she wanted to make something of herself.

SANCHEZ-CARDENAS: I wanted to do something big. I wanted to do something that would help people because that is mainly my passion.

CROWN: Through a scholarship, she made her way to the east coast to the NIH Clinical Center. Sanchez-Cardenas is one of 41 students working in the Clinical Center as part of this year's NIH Summer Internship Program, which received more than 10,000 applications. Overall, there were approximately 1,100 participants across the entire NIH. Now, with the experience and training she's gained at the Clinical Center, Sanchez-Cardenas is more certain than ever that she would like to become a doctor.

SANCHEZ-CARDENAS: When I start taking those courses in biology and physiology or just in the different sciences, I can be, like, 'oh, yeah, I saw that procedure.'

CROWN: Sanchez-Cardenas used her time here to complete a research project on health care disparities related to cultural competency – something she says she's seen a lot of where she's from.

SANCHEZ-CARDENAS: As I minority, I was really interested in seeing how minorities were not as represented, especially in the health care system, and how does that actually affect our patients. How does it affect the outcomes if you are a minority patient and you have a physician or nurse who doesn't speak your language?

CROWN: From here, Sanchez-Cardenas is off to college where she'll be a freshman at the University of La Verne in California, majoring in biology and pre-med. Walter Jones, director of Diversity Management and Minority Outreach at NIH Clinical Center says Marina is one success story ...and we need more.

JONES: We need to find a way to prime the pipeline to make young people aware of career opportunities at organizations like the NIH or in academic medicine. This is the nation's hospital. It's not just the mid-Atlantic's, where most of our students are from. But we serve the entire country and certainly we would like to see more students from the West County and more students of Hispanic descent consider careers at the NIH.

CROWN: Learn more about all the training and education opportunities at the Clinical Center by going online to I'm Ellen Crown from the Clinical Center at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, an agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

This page last reviewed on 08/25/11

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