Merck Internship Gives Chemistry Major Pharmaceutical Lab Experience

Eryn Nelson '19 has had plenty of experience in the labs at Dickinson, but now she's getting an exclusive glimpse into how a pharmaceutical giant like Merck operates.

Eryn Nelson '19, Merck



Internship title:

Analytical research & development intern. 

What I do, day to day:

Every day, I am in the lab conducting research for the purpose of developing a method to quantify residual protein in active pharmaceutical ingredients.

Other internships:

My previous internship was as a lab assistant for the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, where I assisted with water quality testing. I am planning to go to grad school following my last year at Dickinson, but I am considering doing another internship during the summer in between. I would love to intern again at Merck, but I would also be open to an internship at a different pharmaceutical company.

Most valuable part of this experience:

It is extremely valuable for me to be able to work in a different lab environment, so that I can see the differences between labs in industry versus those at school and experience how each one operates. The best part of this internship is that I have the opportunity to make a real impact in the department and hopefully my research can be used for years following the end of my time here.

Advice for students considering internships:

I would recommend gaining as much experience as possible—internships are vital in helping you determine what you like, and also what you don't. You can learn a lot about yourself and what you want in a career by interning at various locations/companies and trying new things.

How this internship has helped me:

I have gained so much lab experience that will be helpful for my time at Dickinson and after. I feel better prepared for grad school now that I have had the opportunity to design my own experiments and think critically of my work.

Post-Dickinson plans:

I plan to attend graduate school and pursue a career in the pharmaceutical industry, either in analytical or discovery chemistry.

Learn more about Nelson's Dickinson experience in "Hitting Her Stride." Learn more about internships at Dickinson.


Published July 27, 2018