For foreign fellows transitioning to life in the United States, NCI at Frederick employees are an integral resource. As citizens or residents of the country and the Frederick community, they represent valuable sources of information, emotional support, and scientific guidance. It’s true that the training staff fill many of these roles, but all staff can play a part in welcoming and helping foreign fellows. To help employees and principal investigators who work with new foreign fellows, current NCI at Frederick fellows and staff have offered the following tips.
Moving to a new place can be difficult, especially for young scientists coming to the U.S. for fellowships. There are the usual challenges of long-distance travel, adjusting to a new locale, and—in some cases—becoming proficient in another language. On top of that, there’s the added pressure to settle in and begin working as soon as possible. To help incoming and recently arrived fellows, current NCI at Frederick fellows and staff have offered the following advice.
A young scientist from outside the United States says she had many expectations after learning she’d been hired for a postdoctoral fellowship at the National Cancer Institute. Being unable to find housing wasn’t one of them—but that’s where she and her family ended up three weeks after arriving in the U.S. For many foreign fellows, coming to work at the National Institutes of Health is the opportunity of a lifetime and a thrilling new adventure. But the difficulties of starting fresh in a new country also make it incredibly stressful and daunting. Fortunately, there are tools and strategies that can help, and current employees and fellows have volunteered advice for foreign scientists who are planning their move to Frederick.
By her own admission, Amanda Corbel is a people person. She enjoys interacting with others and collaborating on new and exciting projects. But she is also passionate about science. Corbel completed four internships at the National Cancer Institute while earning her bachelor’s degree in biology from Shepherd University, followed them up with a postbaccalaureate fellowship, and co-authored five publications.
Euna Yoo, Ph.D., has found what she calls “the perfect place” to begin her career as an independent researcher—the Chemical Biology Laboratory at NCI at Frederick. The 11-year-old laboratory is an internationally recognized program that performs basic science to develop and apply chemical tools, methods, and materials to understand and alter biological processes involved in cancer and AIDS.
On November 19, an internationally renowned virologist will visit NCI at Frederick to deliver a lecture in the Building 549 auditorium. Beatrice Hahn, M.D., was invited by the NCI HIV Dynamics and Replication Program, which is hosting her as the speaker and recipient of the Eighth Annual David Derse Memorial Lecture and Award.
Alexander Wlodawer, Ph.D., displays a family tree on the wall near his office, but none of his relatives appear among its branches. In fact, with a few exceptions, the people listed on it aren’t genetically related to each other. Instead, it’s the Family Tree of Crystallography, a who-trained-who of famous scientists that extends back to the first crystallographic experiment in 1913.
Maddie Hurwitz is something of a renaissance woman. An undergraduate student at Williams College, she is passionate about science, ensemble music, and equestrian sports. She also spent every summer from 2016–2018 at NCI at Frederick working on projects spanning immunity research, clinical medicine, and genetics.
When Jackie Stewart accepted her dream job with the Frederick National Laboratory’s Laboratory Animal Sciences Program last year, it wasn’t the first time she had set foot on the sprawling campus owned by NCI at Frederick, the national lab’s government sponsor and partner. Stewart had spent the 2007–2008 school year and every summer and winter from 2008–2011 as a student intern at the Frederick National Laboratory and NCI at Frederick.
Howard Young, Ph.D., has received many awards during his tenure at NCI at Frederick—but the latest could be among the most meaningful. At the recent NCI Principal Investigators Retreat, Young was given the 2019 Mentoring Award by the Women Scientists Advisors (WSA), a group that supports and promotes career development for women in science.