My Health Data Research UK (HDR UK) Black Internship Programme experience: Laban Masunga
17 August 2021 | Author: Laban Masunga, Intern at University of Cambridge
Laban Masunga reflects on his experience as an intern within our Black Internship Programme at The University of Cambridge.
Before joining the MRC Biostatistics Unit (BSU) in June 2021, I was nervous and thought things will be so difficult because of my limited knowledge in health data science and specifically Genomics where my project was centred. The project involved modelling relapse of breast cancer using a high-dimensional genomics dataset (a dataset with more than 35,000 variables) from 2,000 breast cancer patients for the METABRIC cohort, a survival analysis case.
I had no idea how survival models are instigated neither has played with real-life big datasets by combining two large and different sets. But special thanks to Dr. Oscar Rueda for his trust in me. I remember to have met him for the first time during the interview process and after joining the BSU unit he made my journey so easy and cherishable, taking me step by step and ensuring I’m getting things right. Also, much thanks to Mr. Solon for his constructive ideas in the last few weeks indeed was a great honour having him aboard.
My R programming has significantly improved within my time at the University of Cambridge, and I am much more confident in playing with any big dataset no matter how unarranged it could be; indeed, it was enjoyable to access and see how high performing clustering (HPC) machines work to simplify my computational tasks during multiple sampling stage in my project. Enormous applause to Health Data Research UK for coming up with this initiative of Black interns which have completely changed my understanding of how diverse Data Science is especially by introducing me to Health Data Science, an area that I’m starting to grow a high interest in.
It was a great honour to be at the MRC BSU through Health Data Research UK. I will remember and cherish this internship in every aspect of my profession.
Health Data Science Black Internship Programme
As the UK’s national institute for health data research, we are helping to transform the prospects of talented Black health data scientists in the UK by providing opportunities to flourish in...
Class of 2021
We are keen to help transform the prospects of, and provide opportunities for, early career Black people in the UK to flourish in their future health data science careers. Here, you can meet the...