MDF Welcomes 2022 Summer Interns

By Niv Joshi.

MDF is happy to welcome four new interns, across several departments, to the team this Summer! 

We are delighted that Annalise, Emily, Niv and Pari will be contributing to the MDF mission of Community, Care, and a Cure and helping to advance our work through projects tailored to each of their skill sets. We appreciate all of their enthusiasm to improve our support of the DM community! 

Meet our Amazing Interns!

Annalise Kalmanoff
Public Health Intern

Annalise Kalmanoff joins the foundation as a Public Health Intern, working on patient-oriented health resources. Annalise is a rising sophomore at UC Davis, where she is pursuing an undergraduate degree in Anthropology with a minor in Public Health. She was raised in Berkeley, CA and is happy to be back in the Bay Area this Summer. Annalise enjoys biking near the Marina and listening to movie scores and soundtracks. She is excited to be a part of the team and to continue developing her Public Health research skills for the future.

MDF: What project(s) are you currently working on?

AK: At MDF, I’m learning about the value of accessible information, self-advocacy, and talking with the community you serve. This summer I am working on creating 1–2-page, patient-oriented health resources that make it easier to understand essential DM symptom information and to familiarize individuals living with DM about managing the different aspects of their health. These resources will cover the various body systems DM affects, such as the cardiovascular system, as well as other critical topics like anesthesia management.

MDF: What inspired you to join MDF?

AK: From the very beginning, MDF stood out to me because they value both finding a cure through scientific research, as well as establishing a supportive community.

MDF: What drives you as a team member at MDF?

AK: My favorite part about working with MDF is knowing that the work I do is helping real people get a better understanding of what’s going on with their health journey.

Emily Romney
Nonprofit Public Health Program Intern

Emily Romney joins MDF as a Nonprofit Public Health Program Intern, assisting with the monumental project of updating the toolkit. Emily is currently a graduate student at Brigham Young University and will graduate in the fall with her Master of Public Administration degree with an emphasis in nonprofits with a social impact minor. She hopes to utilize her different educational experiences and backgrounds in the intersection between the public health and nonprofit sectors.

MDF: What project(s) are you currently working on?

ER: I am working on updating the MDF Toolkit! This includes organizing new recommendations for symptom management, adding new resources from MDF, and gathering feedback and suggestions from the community members to add to the value that the current toolkit brings to the DM community.

MDF: What inspired you to join MDF?

ER: I learned about MDF during my search for an internship and was immediately drawn to the organization's mission and its workplace culture. I have been incredibly impressed with how strategy-driven MDF is and how individuals are at the core of each of the organization's goals.

MDF: What drives you as a team member at MDF?

ER: I am excited and honored to be a part of the MDF team as they work to support the global DM community through their mission of Community, Care, and a Cure.

Niv Joshi
Communications Intern

Niv Joshi joins the team as a Communications Intern, supporting content production to bring awareness to MDF’s many resources and incredible community stories. Niv is a senior at the University of Washington in Seattle, where she is pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Communication with a minor in Acting. She grew up in Ahmedabad, India, with an interest in Indian classical dance and creative writing.

MDF: What project(s) are you currently working on?

NJ: I am working on updating the emails that welcome new community members, aiming to create an easy-to-understand package of resources for newly diagnosed families to begin navigating their journey with DM. I am also supporting MDF’s social media presence by designing posts and graphics to highlight our care programs. During my time here, I hope to have conversations with as many people in the DM community as possible and to use MDF’s platform to help share their stories! I am also working with the clinical community in India to introduce MDF's relevant life-saving resources with a possibility of translating them and hope to advocate for such outreach specifically designed for the international DM community.

MDF: What inspired you to join MDF?

NJ: MDF’s transparency in sharing their values was inspirational and a big motivator for me to join the team. I have since had the opportunity to explore my personal and professional values for which I am truly grateful to MDF. Ever since I came across this organization, I have been thrilled to be contributing to projects that are changing the future of this rare disease in a scientific, research-based, and caring way.

MDF: What drives you as a team member at MDF?

NJ: In addition to its values, it is the constant support, empathy, and empowerment that MDF provides its community members that drives and inspires me. The Communications team’s creative approach to these goals makes me even more excited to get to work!

Pari Shah
Public Health Research Intern

Pari Shah joins MDF this Summer as a Public Health Research Intern, lending her skills to the development of the MDF Research Map. She is seeking a Bachelor of Science in Public Health with a Concentration in Biostatistics at UC San Diego Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health. In college, she has had the opportunity to explore the realms of research and disability. She holds a Research Assistant position at the School of Engineering in partnership with the School of Medicine at UCSD. As a result, Pari discovered her passion for research and now hopes to further her skills and knowledge at MDF.

MDF: What project(s) are you currently working on?

PS: In my current position at MDF, I am responsible for aiding in the creation of the DM Research Map, which will provide the DM community and researchers with a new and convenient way to access research-related to myotonic dystrophy.

MDF: What inspired you to join MDF?

PS: MDF is unique in that it is a small but mighty foundation. When I was interviewing for the position, I could immediately tell that the whole team was genuine about the cause. As someone who is just starting out in their career, I wanted a supportive environment to work in and that is exactly what we have at MDF. I also appreciated how everyone from my supervisor, Kate, to the CEO, Tanya, really makes the interns feel like a part of the team. They have made it abundantly clear that they want us all to learn and get the most out of this internship!

MDF: What drives you as a team member at MDF?

PS: The number one thing I appreciate about MDF is the incredible teamwork and supportive environment. I feel truly blessed to have my very first professional experience at this one-of-a-kind organization. Everyone works wholeheartedly toward the same goal of supporting the DM community.

Welcome to the team! We are thrilled to have you aboard and cannot wait to see what we can achieve together for the DM community this summer!

Interested in contributing to the MDF Team? MDF is growing!

Help ensure DM families all across the globe are receiving the resources and support they need. The foundation is accepting applications for multiple internship and volunteering opportunities, including signing up to share your story in a community interview! Click here to get involved.

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