When my advisor told me about the PLEN Science and Health Policy: Critical Issues Seminar, I did not entirely know what to expect. After doing research and reading about the experiences of PLEN alumnae, however, I knew it was an opportunity worth taking. As a senior at St. Lawrence University, it was about that time for me to decide my next step. As I headed to Washington DC at the beginning of the new year, I hoped PLEN would give me guidance on potential careers in science and health policy.
As an anthropology major interested in developing healthcare and environmental sustainability, I was curious to learn about the presence of scientists (especially women scientists) in politics and public policy. The speakers not only gave me insight into the numerous jobs and educational opportunities related to science and health policy available for post-grads, they inspired me to look into ways I can translate my interests in both the biological and social sciences into a career. Beyond this, I found the numerous workshops to be extremely informative of how to make a positive statement in the professional realm.
To say I was impressed with the quality of the PLEN conference would be an understatement. I, as well as all of the young women who attended the Science and Health Policy: Critical Issues Seminar hosted by PLEN, owe a huge “thank you!” to all of the volunteers, speakers, and especially Fahim Gulamali and Lisa Rice who worked to make this seminar as profound as it was. I would also like to thank my sponsor, Novo Nordisk, whose support and generosity made it possible for me to attend the conference.