Applications for the 2014 BTB internship program will become available January 6, 2014.
The Beyond Traditional Borders internship program gives students a life-changing experience implementing technologies of their own design in resource-poor settings in the developing world. The program also:
- Improves students' understanding of challenges to health in resource-poor communities;
- Inspires ideas for appropriate technological innovations that can improve healthcare delivery in resource-poor communities;
- Allows students to gather critical feedback to improve future iterations of technology designs.
Through 8-week summer internships in healthcare settings in Africa and Latin America, exceptional students implement their global health technology designs under the guidance of trained clinicians and onsite mentors.
Interns have three goals -- implement their technology designs; complete a project assigned by the in-country mentor; and identify, design, and implement a solution to a challenge at their internship sites.
What student-interns are saying:
Yiwen in Malawi: "There were the bili-lights, propped on top of the wooden incubators. I felt honored that the lights I helped make were being used. It was surreal to actually see babies under the bili-lights I made last summer. I thought about it, dreamed about it, but I couldn’t believe I was actually seeing it in a hospital setting rather than in a research lab."
Josh in Lesotho: "In the end, this was probably the most life changing experience I have ever had… The trip only solidified my interests, and made me proud of what I am studying and its possible applications… I think that I learned exponentially more during my trip than I could have ever taught. I think this is the nature of living in a foreign country implementing projects of your own design– you learn (and mature) very quickly."
Read a few excerpts below.
|In many ways, this internship has felt like the culmination of months of preparation and work, and it has been, but I also know that this is just the end of a beginning. ... I went into this internship expecting to figure out which post-grad road to take, but I’m surprisingly as uncertain as ever. I’ve experienced the hope in teaching children who otherwise would not receive an education, witnessed the joy in providing sight to the blind, felt the excitement in building devices that improve the health of those most in need, and enjoyed the adventure of traveling and experiencing a new culture. A year ago, I never would have expected to be where I am now, so I’m not too worried about the futureundefinedI know it will work out even better than I can imagine. - Jocelyn
|From this trip, I’ve realized how very real women and gender issues are in the developing world: how intimately tied financial independence, education, and health really are, and I’ve realized how very real my passion is for this issue. I’m really excited about my own future now, pursuing a PhD in bioengineering while starting to explore ways I can become involved with these gender and health issues abroad and even in my own community. The Bioengineering department and Beyond Traditional Borders Initiative have given me a truly enriching and thought-provoking experience and education and I know that I am leaving Rice a much stronger person than I came in. -Neha
|I have felt the pang of injustice, not injustice I have personally faced, but injustice that I have felt through my close encounters with children, mothers, grandmothers, health professionals and people from all over the world working in Lesotho. I have seen things and felt emotions that have left a lasting impression, and I only hope that I have been able to contribute a fraction of the impact I have felt myself and that I have been able to leave just one child with a fraction of the knowledge I have collected during my time here.- Christina