A Look Inside the dna Internship Program

This summer, Emily Ruiz (Client Experience Intern), Jada Covington (Media Relations Intern), Jana Jaran (Client Experience Intern) and Samantha Alfano (Digital Intern) joined us for the dna internship program. We asked them to share about their time here, with questions ranging from why they chose health communications to how they navigated a virtual internship experience.

How did you end up in health communications? What’s your favorite part about this field so far?
“As someone who has always found great interest in writing and marketing but holds a strong background in nursing and public health, I figured leveraging my present skills to develop my potential interest would be the best way to enter the communications space. I love that I’m still able to immerse myself in the interpersonal, written, and verbal communication aspects of healthcare, minus the clinical work.” – Jada Covington

“While I accidently stumbled upon the health communications space, I couldn’t be more thankful that I did. For me, my favorite part about it has been the guidance and help we offer patients and HCPs. It’s a rewarding feeling when you can contribute even just a little to getting critical information to those that need it and it’s become one of my favorite parts about the field.” – Emily Ruiz

Why did you choose dna? What’s your favorite part about dna?
“I chose dna because everyone I knew who’d worked at dna had only positive things to say about the people and their experience overall. I’m really thankful that my first exposure to this industry has been with dna because they’ve taught me so much about not only communications and the way it is evolving, but also about organization, presentation skills, the creative process, and of course, the latest advances and trending topics in health care.” – Jana Jaran

“I chose dna because I was drawn to the work the team put together but more importantly, how they did it. A smaller-sized agency setting allows for more seamless collaboration amongst team members, something the dna team is great at. My favorite part would have to be the people. Everyone is so incredibly nice and willing to lend help and advice, not to mention, the passion they have for their work is evident.” – Emily Ruiz

What were the positive aspects of your virtual intern experience?
“One strong benefit from working in a virtual environment has been simply learning the general skills and tools to working with technology. Currently, technology is a crucial part of everyday life. Working virtually has allowed me to grow digitally and gain an upper hand as I continue to work with technology.” – Samantha Alfano

“I’ve loved the freedom to work from virtually anywhere! I was lucky to be able to spend a few days at the beach during this internship, where I worked with a view of the Potomac River. I also am really enjoying the intern projects, which provide a space to make use of what we’ve learned from the internship so far and engage creatively with our peers.” – Jana Jaran

What are your tips for navigating life as an intern?
“The biggest piece of advice I would give to an intern, especially in the healthcare space, is to always ask questions and seek clarification. For me, healthcare was an unfamiliar space. Asking questions to my managers and co-workers has allowed me to learn in the correct and most efficient ways. In healthcare, there will be a lot of terms and concepts you may not understand; the only way to better yourself in this field is to ask questions!”- Samantha Alfano

“Though it’s common for me to err on the side of introversion upon entering unfamiliar spaces, I know the importance of stepping up, asking questions, and reaching out to co-workers when help is needed on either end—I’d advise other interns to do the same. Be sure to read and research as it relates to your field, be confident but leave room for curiosity, and know that learning and skill acquisition is a lifelong process accompanied by imperfection, yes, but fulfillment, too.” – Jada Covington