I am doing my internship at the Environmental Health and Safety department at UW. I am mentored by a lab compliance specialist, and I will be surveying 500+ labs in 12 weeks. Going into the internship, I had very little prior experience in doing independent projects. Therefore, one thing I want to take away from the internship is how to manage my time, while doing everything to the best of my ability (i.e. balancing between quality and quantity).
12 weeks is such a short time frame, and so I will have to really plan out what I am doing. I will be compiling informations from two different online databases, and putting together schedules so I can email individual lab Principal Investigators (PIs) and chemical hygiene officers (CHOs). Then, I will work on looking for items to put in the gift bags that I will bring for my visit. Following that, I will visit the labs, and spend time on checking their safety signs, asking them questions about the new tool developed (labRAT: risk assessment tool), and explaining to them a contest that is going to take place in December. I will then enter the data collected in an excel sheet. Personally I think planning is a really important skill in my internship, being able to plan out everything and not leave anything out is critical yet challenging for me. Another thing I will remind myself during the lab visits is the 20 minutes may be a very short time in my 12 weeks of internship, but it might be the only time the PI and CHO are going to see me, so whatever I do will have a huge impact on them.