GRIP, Internships Abroad, Research Abroad Engineering & Health Sciences Student Highlights

October 27, 2020
By Erin Feeney, Penn Abroad Graduate Assistant

Global experiences in engineering and health sciences can provide key opportunities for students to gain hands-on experience and apply their knowledge and skills in a new context. Through the Global Research & Internship Program (GRIP), Penn students from across schools have spent the summer abroad, taking on exciting research projects and professional opportunities. Let’s explore the past experiences of GRIP participants within the fields of engineering and health sciences to gain insight into the student experience abroad and how Penn students can make the most of these opportunities.  

Research in a Global Context

In Aachen, Germany, Ethan Boyer (SEAS ‘21) spent ten weeks conducting research in 3-D printing microvascular networks at the RWTH Aachen University Hospital. In his third week there, Ethan wrote of his excitement as he transitioned from his initial literature-based research to working hands-on in the laboratory. Outside of work, Ethan enjoyed exploring the rich history of Aachen and traveling to other cities in Europe with new friends.  

Ethan Boyer
Ethan Boyer at Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany


During her time at Trinity College Dublin, Nora Hennessy (Nursing ‘21) mined six major databases to create a qualitative systematic literature review. The experience not only prepared her for an upcoming nursing research course at Penn, but also allowed her to recognize her interest in pursuing nursing research as a career. Outside of her research role, Nora enjoyed spending time with her Irish host family, hiking throughout Ireland and Scotland, and exploring Dublin with fellow Penn students.  

Nora Henessey
Penn Nursing students Nora Hennessy and Melissa Sullivan in Ireland


Global Community & Professional Exploration

Amy Yueng (SEAS ‘21) interned at Science Workshop, a science and technology school in Hong Kong. Although she had tutored within the STEM field before, Amy desired to do so in a new city and environment. Her time at Science Workshop provided the opportunity to work with a variety of age groups and class sizes and opened her up to the possibility of working in academics in STEM, whether it be research or teaching. Outside of work, Amy enjoyed trying the local, notably affordable, cuisine, traveling, forming new friendships, and practicing her Cantonese.  

At the World Medical Association in Geneva, Switzerland, Penn students have described experiencing a “microcosm of the whole world.” Carolyn Chow (CAS ‘20) marveled at the multilingualism she found to be so common there and relished the opportunity to learn about the cultures and unique backgrounds of each of her international colleagues. Within the diversity of this workplace, students discover unparalleled opportunities for professional exploration and advancement. On the very first day of her internship, Rania Monsour (CPHI ‘19) was offered the opportunity to speak on behalf of the World Medical Association at the World Health Assembly taking place at the UN Headquarters in Geneva. Through conducting her research and attending events such as the 71st World Health Assembly and the 38th UN Human Rights Council, Ruth Lee (Nursing ‘20) gained a more full and nuanced understanding of global health and the intersection of health and human rights. 


The Global Research and Internship Program (GRIP) provides outstanding undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to intern or conduct research abroad for 8 to 12 weeks over the summer. Participants gain career-enhancing experience and global exposure that is essential in a global workforce. Placements and funding awards are available.