You've 15 days (and counting) to apply to be a DAN Research Intern

Time to read
2 minutes
Read so far

You've 15 days (and counting) to apply to be a DAN Research Intern

January 15, 2020 - 16:37
Posted in section:

Divers Alert Network has put a call out for would-be summer interns who wish to work in scientific research.

Former DAN Intern Jenna Wiley TTEing a rebreather subject for a study into decompression stress, under the supervision of Dr Neal W Pollock

Established by Dr Richard D Vann

This program was started by the respected American academic and former Navy Seal Dr Dick Vann, when he headed up the Research Department. Dr Neal W Pollock became involved with the internship in 1999 and increased the scientific rigor of the program. The day-to-day administrator who interacted with the interns through all the early years was Donna Uguccioni.

What will the intern do?

The successful candidate will be based at DAN in Durham, North Carolina, USA for three months. Duties will include various facets of scientific research including proposal writing, ethics approval, data collection, analysis and publication. This is a good opportunity for a bright, motivated undergraduate and graduate student, and has the potential to help the right candidate with their future career.

Where can a DAN Internship take you?

Jenna Wiley applied to be a DAN intern and was employed by DAN from May through to October 2011. She was mentored by Associate Professor Neal W Pollock. Jenna was a trained Phlebotomist (a person who draws / collect blood samples from subjects or patients. The sample is then sent off for analysis and testing.)

Jenna Wiley was interested. She had the right skills and she was a highly motivated individual. Her experience at DAN helped give her insights she might not have gained. Neal W Pollock

"After a week of orientation, I flew to Grand Cayman as part of the DAN field research team conducting a study on technical rebreather divers. As a phlebotomist my responsibilities were primarily to draw blood on subjects to support a biomarker study based at the University of Pennsylvania.

I also collected depth-time dive profile and diver health data, assisted with anthropometric data entry and observed the rest of the team conducting cardiac ultrasound scans. We obtained these transthoracic echo (TTE) scans to look at bubbles traveling through the subjects' hearts as a result of decompression stress. Although not a definitive indication as to whether or not a diver will obtain symptoms of decompression sickness, observing bubbles is one of the few tools we have to compare risks while diving.

After a week on Grand Cayman, I returned to Durham, N.C., to continue the internship". When Jenna Wiley's internship finished she was hired by DAN as a Research Associate 1.

Being a DAN intern helped confirm my desire to pursue a medically-focused career. Jenna Wiley

Jenna Wiley left DAN to attend Medical School. Today she is Jenna Wiley MD, and works as a Resident Physician in North Carolina.

Application Criteria

This is not a filing paperwork or making coffee internship, it is a demanding program that gives interns real-world life and career skills.

To qualify, candidates must be 20 years old by 1 June 2020, and be enrolled in an undergraduate degree program or in the first year of a graduate program, with an educational track in science preferred. As the research internship is dive-focused, applicants must also be certified scuba divers.

One of the experiences I'm most grateful for is being a DAN intern where I met some pretty incredible mentors. Here's hoping someone will apply and discover new opportunities in diving. Jenna Wiley

How to apply

To apply for the internship, candidates should submit:

  • DAN’s Internship Program Application Form
  • Professional / academic resume
  • Dive resume (number of dives, environment, depth range, qualifications)
  • Two reference letters from academic and / or professional sources
  • Cover letter (maximum two pages) describing your history (including your ties to diving), interests, aspirations and how this internship will benefit your personal and professional growth

You can access more information by clicking the links in the reference box below. You can also .

What happens next?

The deadline for applying for this year's 2020 DAN Intern program is 31 January 2020.

DAN Research will review applicants’ qualifications and conduct phone interviews before making final decisions in mid-February. Interns will be notified in March. The internship generally begins around the third week of May and will end in late August 2020.

Sources and references