Stephanie Rosas-Garcia is a rising senior at Rutgers University, where she double-majors in Animal Science and Latino and Caribbean Studies. She first heard about Project L/EARN at a summer internships workshop and was very interested in the opportunity to work with a mentor on a one-to-one basis in a subject area she has never been exposed to in depth. Stephanie says “the best thing about this program for me was acquiring new skills such as collaboration with other interns and my mentors. Meeting, interacting, and living with my cohort, with members coming from different backgrounds, was especially rewarding.”
The most challenging aspect of Project L/EARN for Stephanie was the requirement to live on campus for the summer. She explains, “It was particularly hard for me because I have a very strong family bond and I knew the separation was going to be hard, but I reassured them that it will all be worth it in the end.” Stephanie aspires to obtain a masters or PhD upon graduating college and believes that Project L/EARN has undeniably helped her have a better understanding of what she needs to do to reach her goals. She has always been interested in helping animals and minorities, especially Latinos. Her career goal is to establish a program that will use animals as a means of therapy to help minority children stay away from the streets, drugs, gang life, and such.
This summer, Stephanie worked on a project exploring disparities in provider-patient communication among NJ immigrant adults with her mentors, Dr. Dorothy Gaboda and Kristen Lloyd. She says the best part of working with them is that they are both extremely patient and understanding. She felt particularly lucky to have two mentors which allowed her to see the research process from different perspectives. Stephanie says, “Future interns should know that the program is challenging and at times it will be overwhelming and demanding, but it will be a key to many future opportunities.”