Perry Hall HS Graduating Seniors Selected for NIH Internship

Perry Hall High School graduating seniors Aisha Batista and Mahlet Nigussu have been selected to participate in the National Institute on Aging Summer Training in Aging Research Program.

Batista and Nigussu are among only nine students selected from the more than 1,400 students who applied to the program.

Through the Summer Training in Aging Research Program, which is part of the wider National Institutes of Health Summer Internship Program in Biomedical Research, talented students are offered eight- to 10-week paid internships at the National Institute on Aging’s Intramural Research Program in Baltimore.

Batista will work in the Laboratory of Epidemiology and Population Sciences, and Nigussu will work in the Laboratory of Genetics and Genomics. In addition to completing challenging research, Batista and Nigussu will attend scientific seminars, network with peers, and present at a summer research poster day at both the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore and at the National Institutes of Health main campus in Bethesda, Md.

“Mahlet and Aisha are two of the most hardworking and intelligent students that I’ve taught,” said Perry Hall High science teacher Michael Losinger. “Their passion for the healthcare field is inspiring, and I’m so proud of them for this awesome accomplishment!”

Batista is president of the Spanish Honor Society and participates in the Outstanding Young Women Leaders Program at Towson University. She is the founder of The Vision Club, which encourages students to explore their passions and set goals.

Proud of her Hispanic heritage, Batista has earned the Maryland Seal of Biliteracy in English and Spanish. She has explored her interest in healthcare through her coursework and her participation in Health Occupations Students of America.

During summer 2023, she interned at the National Institute on Aging’s Shock Academy for Laboratory Skills, where she focused on local health disparities. Batista will attend the University of Maryland where she plans to study public health with a minor in neuroscience.

Nigussu, who plans to pursue a career in medicine, balances extracurricular activities, a job, and family life while maintaining a 4.0 GPA. She serves as president of the Class of 2024 and vice president of both the National Honor Society and Science National Honor Society.

She has been involved with the Student Council, Health Occupations Students of America, and the Spanish Honor Society. She serves as a student aide to the school’s Office of School Counseling and assists with welcoming new students and providing support to the school’s eight counselors. In the fall, Nigussu will be a pre-med student at the University of Maryland.

B.J. Joseph

Benjamin Joesph has covered news in Eastern Baltimore County since 2006. He started as a reporter with the original East County Times in 2006. He started East Baltco News and later in 2022.