AMSA students get head start on careers through internship with Quest
MetroWest Daily News
MARLBOROUGH — Allison Silva jumped at the opportunity to get hands-on experience working in the labs at Quest Diagnostics.
Silva and other seniors at Marlborough’s Advanced Math and Science Academy were invited to apply for internships working in the labs at Quest, which is across from the charter school on Forest Street.
“This is exactly what I want to do,” said Silva, who will be double majoring in material science and engineering and biomedical engineering at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh this fall. “It seemed right up my alley."
Five AMSA students — Silva, Jewel Pauly, Sydney Kerivan, Evangelina Burdick and Gabriel Ingelido — were chosen after interviews. They have been working in Quest’s labs each Monday for the past few weeks.
AMSA Community Outreach Manager Mark Vital has long been interested in creating an internship program with the school’s neighbor.
Vital invited officials at Quest to tour the school during AMSA’s annual research night.
“They were totally caught off-guard to the level of research our students do,” Vital said.
The school and Quest recently collaborated on the internship program, allowing students interested in biomedical engineering to get a firsthand look at what happens in the lab. Vital required interested students to submit their resumes and interview for one of five spots.
Students have been working alongside professionals in Quest’s specimen management department, where they prepare specimens for testing, tag and log them into the system and collect data. Students have been working with COVID-19 samples, along with other specimens.
“It’s really rewarding to know I’m doing something that’s benefiting other people,” said Kerivan.
Quest officials say the program is invaluable in sparking interest in biomedical engineering in students and preparing them for the future. Quest has similar programs with other area schools, said Pauline Brannelly, the company's human resources manager.
Karthikeyan Kuppusamy, vice president and general manager at Quest, called the program a win-win for the students and Quest.
“They’re truly differentiating themselves in their college application,” Kuppusamy said of the experience AMSA students are getting at Quest.
Brannelly stressed that Quest is committed to partnering with local schools to create a learning environment for students. The company also offers tours of the lab for high school juniors in the area to learn more about science.
“It’s solidified what I want to do,” said Silva. “I love my job.”
Jeff Malachowski can be reached at 508-490-7466 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @JmalachowskiMW.