Victoria Cho is once again taking her passion for public health and education abroad.
Cho, a fourth-year PharmD candidate and the first USC School of Pharmacy student to earn an International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) internship, is spending her summer in The Hague, Netherlands. She is one of only two interns invited to work at The Hague’s FIP headquarters, where her internship focuses on pharmaceutical policy.
During her stay, Cho will be working on two separate projects. The first involves analyzing the impact that pharmacists have on public health or health promotion throughout the year; the second entails evaluating the role predominantly scientific member organizations play in health care.
“I applied for the internship after traveling to Uganda last summer on an outreach trip with USC Global Health,” Cho said. “I educated rural villagers on how to correctly take medications and why they should do it. It really opened my eyes to the power of education and inspired me to look into a public health internship at FIP.”
During her trip to Uganda, Cho noticed that many of the health clinics had informational posters that were not well targeted for the patients there and consequently were unable to make a measurable impact.
“The project I proposed for the FIP internship was creating a booklet on HIV/AIDS targeting this particular population,” Cho said. “I saw the opportunity for a teachable moment by using culturally sensitive educational tools to engage those who came into the clinics.”
Cho previously earned a Schweitzer Fellowship, which she used to inform older Chinese-American adults how cultural remedies affect prescribed medicines.
“I was able to meet with 430 elderly Chinese-American men and women at the APC Senior Wellness Center through health fairs, brown bag sessions and educational seminars,” said Cho, who eventually hopes to pursue a career in health education. “We also conducted a Mahjong instructional session to help increase seniors’ mental activity and social activity, and initiated Mandarin class sessions during the summer.”