Experiential Learning Opportunities
As an engaged student, it is important for you to participate in experiential learning—such as with internships, research, or service opportunities like Operation Walk. Doing so will put into practice what you learn in the classroom and help you make professional connections on your path to professional or graduate school.
Internships are great ways to gain insight and experience in a particular field. They allow you to evaluate a profession while strengthening your resume and your applications to graduate and professional schools.
Dimensions works closely with the Berry Career Institute to help students like you secure internships in the health sciences, working side-by-side with professionals in real-world situations.
Cornell students are regularly able to secure internships through Dimensions with these sites:
Mayo Clinic Center for Sleep Medicine (Rochester, Minnesota)
Students participate in a research-based internship as part of Cornell Fellows, and work on sleep studies under mentorship from a neurologist. Various shadowing and other professional development activities also occur. Learn more about the Mayo Clinic opportunity and read the blog of a recent Mayo Clinic student’s experience.
Children’s Hospital Colorado Center for Gait Movement and Analysis (Denver, Colorado)
Students participate in a research-based internship as part of Cornell Fellows, and work on a research project with an orthopedist. (Examples of studies can include concussions in youth athletes or opioid prescription trends). Various shadowing and other professional development activities also occur. Learn more about the Children's Hospital opportunity and read the blog of a recent Children's Hospital student’s experience.
Catalysis (Appleton, Wisconsin)
Founded by John Toussaint, MD (‘78), Catalysis is an organization dedicated to improving how healthcare is managed and delivered. Students engage in an office-setting internship experience in which they work on projects related to improving efficiency and implementing lean principles in healthcare. Visits to executive sites (ThedaCare Regional Medical Center) and other professional development activities also occur. Learn more about Catalysis.
University of Colorado Division of Renal Diseases and Hypertension (Denver, Colorado)
Located on the Anschutz Medical Campus, students engage in an internship working in a laboratory setting focused on developing plant-derived drugs / therapeutics as they apply to metabolic syndrome, pulmonary hypertension, and other conditions. Other professional development activities also occur, including seminars and departmental meetings. Learn more about this division at Colorado.
Our students have also participated in other internships around the world, from Iowa to India. Even if you don’t see an opportunity here, Dimensions can help you find one. The following are just a few examples of previous student internships:
- Baylor College of Medicine (Houston, Texas)
- Harvard University T.H. Chan School of Public Health (Boston, Massachusetts)
- Indian Institute for Health Management Research (Jaipur, India)
- Anamosa Veterinary Clinic (Anamosa, Iowa)
- Milwaukee Dept. of Public Health (Milwaukee, Wisconsin)
- Miguel Angel Asturias Spanish School (Quetzaltenango, Guatemala)
- University of Michigan School of Dentistry (Ann Arbor, Michigan)
- New York City Medical Examiner’s Office (New York, New York)
- Hanger Clinic Prosthetics and Orthotics (Iowa City, Iowa)
- Maine Medical Center Research Institute (Scarborough, Maine)
- Power Tek Fitness (Woodville, Ontario, Canada)
- Kluver Chiropractic (Mount Vernon, Iowa)
Research experience is an integral part of any graduate or professional school application in the health sciences. You can participate in research with Cornell faculty or apply for research opportunities away from the Hilltop.
Dimensions works closely with faculty and the Berry Career Institute to help students like you secure research experience, working side-by-side with professionals in real-world situations.
Cornell students have secured these research experiences:
- Libby Anderson, ‘18, biochemistry and molecular biology major, pre-public health—research on genetic diversity in fire coral species with Dr. Craig Tepper (Cornell Summer Research Institute)
- David Berger, ‘19, biochemistry and molecular biology and psychology majors, pre-medicine—research project, The Role of the ApoE Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms in a Mouse Model of Repeated Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (Rutgers University, Neuro-SURP)
- Julia Thome, ‘19, mathematics major with statistics minor, pre-public health—research project, Predicting the Fragility of a Country Using Machine Learning (Harvard University, Summer Program in Biostatistics and Computational Biology)
- Jennifer Aguayo, ‘18, biochemistry and molecular biology major, pre-pharmacy—research on the effect of drugs on ion channel function in cell membranes with Dr. Jai Shanata (Cornell Summer Research Institute)
- Thomas Greene, ‘19, kinesiology major, pre-physical therapy—research on the meaning of health in different populations and its impact on lifestyles with Dr. Christina Johnson (Cornell Summer Research Institute)
If you are chosen to participate in Operation Walk, you’ll get the opportunity to observe medical professionals performing joint replacement surgeries and assist with physical therapy and patient rehabilitation.
Operation Walk is a private, non-profit, volunteer medical services organization providing free surgical treatment for patients in developing countries and occasionally in the United States, that have limited or no access to life-improving care for arthritis or other debilitating bone and joint conditions.
Operation Walk also educates in-country orthopedic surgeons, nurses, physical therapists, and other healthcare professionals on the most advanced treatments and surgical techniques for diseases of the hip and knee joints.
A prestigious honor, a mission with history
Cornell students have regularly assisted in Operation Walk missions in countries such as El Salvador, Vietnam, and China since 2005 at the invitation of Operation Walk founder Dr. Lawrence D. Dorr ‘63. Dr. Dorr is the medical director of the Dorr Arthritis Institute at the Keck Hospital of the University of Southern California (USC), is a clinical professor at USC, and is a world leader in hip and joint replacement surgery and research.
Dr. Dorr started Operation Walk in 1994. He received the 2005 Humanitarian of the Year Award from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons for his work with Operation Walk.