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Careers and Training

2003 NEI Summer Student Experiences

Alison Gump and Dr. George Reed

Iíve spent the summer working with the NHANES III (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) data set which is available for public use through the National Center for Health Statistics division of the CDC. The survey involved a multistage complex sampling design which presents some analytical challenges Ė one reason why itís a good project for getting your hands dirty. The data set is also immense Ė another reason why it provides a good learning experience. Finally, part of the dataset contains information gathered from fundus photographs of participants including various outcomes related to macular degeneration Ė making it perfect for gaining experience with eye studies. So I took on this dataset and did some exploratory analysis, developed a few hypotheses and found some interesting relationships that might be interesting enough to publish.

I came to NEI to pursue my interest in age-related eye disease and experience research in the NIH intramural setting. Despite my high expectations for what I would learn and accomplish during my internship, I am still surprised at what a valuable experience it has been.

Alison Gump
Completed her first year of graduate school at Johnís Hopkins in Baltimore, MD

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