Ashton Weber | February 5, 2020
For many pre-med students, meaningful research opportunities are a crucial part of preparing for medical school. One of these students, current senior Maddie Heyn, told us about her summer at St. Jude Children’s Hospital, conducting biostatistics research as part of the Pediatric Oncology Education (POE) program. Maddie is a pre-med Applied Computational Mathematics and Statistics major with a concentration in biology. She is from Greensboro, North Carolina and lived in Flaherty Hall on campus.
Tell us a little about the research you’ve done at Notre Dame.
I haven’t officially done statistical research on campus. I work at the Eck Institute for Global Health which is the global health office on campus, so I help do literature research for them, especially when we do our annual Notre Dame Global Health case competition. Last summer, the summer between my sophomore and junior years, I worked at an immunoparasitology lab in Denmark, which was funded by the Nanovic Institute. When I worked in that lab, it was very interesting and different from what I had done before because they were studying the use of parasites to treat autoimmune conditions.
How did those experiences help you come across the POE Program?
I learned in Denmark that wet lab research is not for me, but that I wanted something more clinically based and focused. When I was looking for summer jobs, I searched on different universities’ websites and saw what they recommended for pre-med students to do in the summer.
What is the POE Program?
The POE program is a research program at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital that accepts undergraduate and medical students who have some kind of research experience in a variety of different fields. There were 50 of us— about 20 medical students and 30 undergrads—and we were all in different labs. St. Jude is in Memphis, Tennessee, and we all lived together nearby and worked in different departments at St. Jude.
Read more here.