Denison Internship Program: Featured Summer Intern

Rowan Sharkey

Year:  Class of 2021
Majors:  Environmental Studies & Data Analytics
Internship Provider:  DAAD Rise German Exchange
Title:  Research Assistant
Location:  Berlin, Germany


What are you doing for your internship? What are some of your responsibilities?

I am conducting research on urban air quality in the city of Berlin. I am looking specifically at how airports impact the air quality of neighborhoods that lie downwind from them. Every day I bike around the city collecting data, then go back to the lab and analyze the results. Through this research, I will be able to identify the areas in which people are more at risk for health issues due to poor air quality.

What do you like most about your internship so far? What has been your favorite part of the experience?

I have loved learning more about how to conduct research and use different coding languages, but most of all I have loved having the opportunity to live in Berlin and experience the culture. By being stationed here, I have been able to travel to different countries every week. Getting the opportunity to travel while still doing work that I love has been an incredible experience!

Which skills have you learned or strengthened during your internship that you think will help when applying for jobs/graduate schools?

I have loved learning more about how to conduct research and use different coding languages, but most of all I have loved having the opportunity to live in Berlin and experience the culture. By being stationed here, I have been able to travel to different countries every week. Getting the opportunity to travel while still doing work that I love has been an incredible experience!

How has your time and experience at Denison prepared you for this internship? How have you used your liberal arts education during your internship?

As a data analyst [major], I had previous experience working with languages such as R, python, and SQL, but this internship has allowed me to take those skills and implement them in a work place environment. Being able to work in a team filled with PhD students has been humbling and has also shown me a glimpse of what it is like to be a part of a real team. Therefore, this internship has strengthened my team building skills and has given me insight into how projects operate outside of a school setting.