For her summer internship, Samantha wanted to work for an organization that would inform her interests in public policy, women, and healthcare through scientific research and data analysis. Samantha wanted to gain a better understanding of how policy is formed and how research can be synthesized and presented in a meaningful way to a range of audiences—from the public to opinion-leaders and lawmakers. The internship at the National Center for Health Research, a think tank located in DC that uses scientific research and data to scrutinize policy impacting women and their families, was a good match to meet Samantha’s goals.
What areas of public policy interest you?
Healthcare, health policy, healthcare access, and health insurance.
I’ve always wanted to do medicine but didn’t really like labs. So I started working in clinics that worked with the homeless, which I liked a lot more. I still want to be a doctor but I want to be the kind that helps the world. My goal is to be an internal medicine doctor, to do things on the frontline.
What is the first thing you do when you get to the office every morning?
Read Twitter – we have to tweet from the organization sometimes, and it’s a good way to get the news quickly. Sometimes we see our boss quoted in tweets.
I’ve learned a lot about the ACA so far. I’ve also enjoyed learning new things about the medical device tax, which has helped make healthcare affordable for many people.
Have there been any surprises regarding living and working as an intern in DC?
I was most surprised by how friendly people have been – everyone’s willing to make friends and meet new people.
Name one object that you brought with you to DC that reflects your personality.
In 30 years, what will you remember about living and working in DC?
There was this one time, we had to quickly look up the numbers on the tax for Congressman Sandy Levin, and minutes later he was on TV quoting our organization…that was really cool.