My time at CURE


Jennifer Nassar

Words cannot describe how emotional I am that my internship at CUREis at an end. But hold on, this isn't a farewell blog. Yes, I will be leaving to start graduate school at the University of North Texas where I will be pursuing a Masters in journalism. No, I'm not done with CURE; at least that's what I hope. Since my full-time role is up, I would like to share with you a little about what I've learned over the past 10 weeks. I definitely think it's safe to say that my knowledge of cancer has gone up just a tad. I have more of an idea of what cancer is now than when I started at CURE. One important thing I learned is that cancer doesn't have rules. It's a free game. Anything can happen to anyone at any time for no apparent reason. Also, if your race, age, or other characteristic gives you a low risk of cancer, it doesn't necessarily mean you're immune to it; something important I learned from speaking with Lindsay Giannobile. [Blog: Listen to your body] Now, I'll talk about a few of the interesting projects I worked on at my time here. Some were very interesting, and even a bit concerning. One significant project I worked on was the patient guide on metastatic breast cancer due out later this year. Another subject I found eye-opening was how infertility is a side effect of chemotherapy or radiation therapy. One of my final journalism projects during my undergrad study at Ole Miss was on a story I did of a couple I went to church with that did four in vitro fertilization attempts before they were able to conceive. Before that project, I didn't realize what a hardship it was for women unable to get pregnant naturally. I can only imagine what that must be like for women undergoing cancer treatment, something I've learned since I've been here.[Blog: Surrogacy: Becoming a parent after cancer] Oh, and one of my favorite assignments was on sexual dysfunction, a side effect of prostate cancer treatment. This will be featured in a prostate cancer article coming up later this year. I read about everything from erections to penis pumps. Yes, I know this is very common in prostate cancer patients and needs to be discussed, but yikes! My mom called me that day and asked how work went. I told her, "I read way too much about the penis."Then there were those touching stories; stories about caregivers, how the little things made the biggest difference, determination, and acceptance. It was those stories that encouraged me to look for hope in negative situations. The list goes on and on. Now for the CURE team. They are some of the smartest, funniest, most determined people I've ever had the pleasure of working with. For the first time in my life, I can honestly say that I like everyone I work with. Leaving them is definitely the hardest part of ending my internship. I'm hoping after I'm done with school, I will continue in the path of health and science; whether it is in writing, public relations, or marketing. I still have a lot to learn and a lot to say, so it's safe to say that you will be seeing me around. Goodbye...but not really.

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