I learned about PLEN and the Science and Health Policy seminar through my academic advisor. From all the seminars listed, the Science and Health Policy: Critical Issues Seminar stood out to me. I wanted to expose myself to new professional fields, and felt as if this seminar could provide me with this outlet. Prior to the seminar, I had little knowledge of the process that goes into policy-making and the opportunities for women in this field who are also interested in science and public health careers. I saw this seminar as a valuable tool to furthering my educational passions and developing the necessary professional skills to succeed in the future.
This seminar exceeded my expectations, not only because it opened my eyes to a new field in policy-making, but also because it exposed me to many exceptional, inspiring, and impressive women who work on a daily basis to promote the representation of science and health policy in our nation. Additionally, each student at the seminar was able to develop her professional skills and gained valuable knowledge on how to present professionally and feel confident in advocating for herself in pursuing a career.
My biggest take away from this seminar was learning what success meant in a career—a part of which was how to succeed and find true happiness in life. Initially, every panelist did not see herself in the positions she currently holds. Each panelist stressed that it is more important to develop oneself as a whole person – someone who can be adaptable, open, and passionate. Another take-away was the power of networking! I learned that it is so important to talk to the people in your life and use the resources that are available to you to the highest degree.
As a PLEN alumna, I have walked away with a strong professional toolkit, confidence in my own abilities and an idea of what I have to offer to the betterment of our nation, and ultimately, the world.
In the end, I would like to thank my scholarship donor Novo Nordisk. Without their generosity, I would not have attended this eye-opening seminar.
Klare Nevins received a scholarship sponsored by Novo Nordisk to attend the 2015 PLEN Science and Health Policy: Critical Issues seminar. She graduated from St. Lawrence University in 2016.