AcademyHealth supports the formation of student chapters to enhance the learning and professional development experience for students in health services research and health policy. While AcademyHealth suggests that each chapter perform several key functions, each chapter is encouraged to develop additional programs and projects of interest to its members. As part of their chapter activities, the George Mason University (GMU) Student Chapter recently organized a site visit with leaders at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Site visits give members a chance to network, familiarize themselves with the organization’s daily activities and get a first-hand account of current programs and research. It is also a great way to obtain information regarding volunteer or internship programs for students. The NIH site visit was the first trip this semester for the GMU chapter. A group that included both undergraduate and graduate students from various programs within the College of Health and Human Services toured part of the 300-acre NIH campus located in Bethesda, MD. The tour began at the NIH Clinical Center, the epicenter of clinical research. The Clinical Center practices bench to bedside patient care, which allows for clinical drugs developed in the labs to immediately be taken to the trial patients. Victoria Duong, graduate student in the Department of Health Administration and Policy (HAP) commented, “We were able to go behind the scenes of the pediatric oncology labs and see medical research occur before our eyes, to think that we were only a few feet away from scientists who are changing lives was fascinating.” Read more about this event here. To start a student chapter or learn more about possible chapter activities, visit our website. NIH trip imageGMU Students at NIH