Guest post written by ETH Zürich Amgen Scholar Azmi Rahman
This past summer, I participated in the Amgen Scholars Europe program, which offered students an opportunity to work with a European research lab of their choice and to then share their findings with fellow attendees at a symposium held in University of Cambridge. It was a delightful experience that brought together more than 100 students across 5 universities: ETH Zürich, Karolinska Institute, Institut Pasteur, LMU Munich, and the University of Cambridge.
Guest post written by Kyoto University Amgen Scholar Grace Njuguna
The Japan Amgen Scholars Program gives an opportunity to students from every part of the world to come together and participate in research in different branches of science. This year, I was privileged to be part of the Amgen Scholars 2017 cohort, which consisted of 44 international students and 4 students from Kyoto University and the University of Tokyo.
For new Amgen Scholars thinking about the next 10 years, it might feel nearly impossible to imagine where they’ll be. Perhaps their research will lead them to academia, perhaps a biotech startup, perhaps policy – the options may feel endless. This unpredictability resonates for one alumna who was part of the first cohort of the Amgen Scholars program in 2007 and took an unexpected trajectory to where she is now.
U.S. Amgen Scholars from 10 host institutions gathered July 15-16 for a two-day symposium at the University of California, Los Angeles. They heard from UCSF professor Dr. Charles Craik about the path to a Ph.D., learned about applying to grad school, and met with faculty at UCLA about their research interests, among other activities. The scholars also visited the Amgen campus in Thousand Oaks, where they learned more about the biopharmaceutical industry and took tours of the cutting-edge facilities.
“Any time you build a connection with someone in your field, or a field you’re interested in, that’s networking,” says Isabelle Rosenthal, reflecting on what she has learned about networking since attending the Amgen Scholars U.S. Symposium at UCLA in 2015. Rosenthal, now a lab manager at the National Eye Institute at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), graduated from Wellesley College with a degree in neuroscience in 2016. She is now studying how humans perceive color.
Two women from two different backgrounds – one from a rural town in Eurasian Georgia and the other from urban Barcelona – both shared something in common growing up: a lack of access to scientific research labs. Now thanks to the Amgen Scholars Program (ASP), both are breaking the mold to become role models for budding female scientists around the world.
This summer, 1,100 student interns will be living, studying, and working on the sprawling campus of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, MD, just north of Washington, D.C. Among them will be five Amgen Scholar alumni who will serve as mentors to some of the high school student interns in a unique pilot program to teach scientists how to be educators.
"The freedom, trust and respect my supervisor and lab colleagues showed toward me allowed me to flourish on my own, and has suitably prepared me for PhD life after I graduate–and my future career as a physician scientist."