I, Ms. Swara Bhaskar Yadav (N00291665) am a Master’s student in the Cancer Biology, Prevention and Control program at University of the District of Columbia. I am writing to say that I am very grateful to the UDC foundation for giving me an opportunity to present my research at the international conference of American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 2018 held in New Orleans by facilitating the registration, travel and accommodation expenses.
The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene conference is a major international meeting that is held annually and attended by delegates from all over the world. In 2018, this conference was held in the beautiful city of New Orleans from Oct 28 – Nov 1. The key note address for the year 2018 was delivered by Dr. Moeti, the regional officer for WHO, Africa. As the meeting progressed, we attended various sessions related to the field that we are working on- Schistosomiasis. This conference also gave me an opportunity to meet and interact with several stalwarts from the field of tropical medicine and diseases. There couldn’t have been a better platform for students like us to be introduced to directors of various institutes, principal investigators of leading laboratories and eminent researchers in tropical diseases. The research carried out under the guidance of Dr. Matty Knight was presented in the form of a poster and was appreciated by many experienced researchers. This also helped me in boosting my confidence to speak in front of total strangers and to present my research results in a clear manner. Meeting with the PI’s encouraged me to find suitable positions to do my PhD and fueled my application process. In fact, during my poster presentation, a PI, Dr. Emmitt Jolly, invited me to join his lab at the Case Western Reserve University to work on my PhD. My supervisor, Dr. Knight, upon our return to UDC, followed up on this kind offer with a phone call and he, fortunately, reaffirmed his offer. I have, therefore, sent in my application to Case Western and I am hopeful for a favorable outcome.
All of this was made possible because of the generous offer of the UDC foundation to support me to attend the conference, and for this, I am truly grateful.