More than just a degree for this Florida Polytechnic University alum

Mar 08, 2019
More than just a degree for this Florida Polytechnic University alum

Editor’s Note: This story is part of a series of feature stories highlighting female students and faculty as Florida Poly celebrates Women’s History Month.

She grew up in Chicago and went to an all-girls school specializing in STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics). Now, Megan Sheeran ’18 is a member of the growing community of Florida Polytechnic University alumni. Through internships as well as research opportunities with faculty, Sheeran is looking forward to the next step in her academic life – graduate school.

Internships with Chastain-Skillman, a design firm in Lakeland, Florida, and the Florida Department of Health in Polk County and Hardee County were vital to Sheeran’s success. At Chastain-Skillman, where she still works as a data engineer, she has been able to master her coding skills while experiencing the daily challenges of working in industry. Her internship with the Department of Health was in its epidemiology department, a field she hopes to put her big data analytics skills to work.

Sheeran has had multiple opportunities to conduct research, both while she was a student and now as a recent graduate. She is currently collaborating with Dr. Susan LeFrancois on research evaluating the impact of public health campaigns for strokes.

“Implementation science is what I want to do,” said Sheeran. “Here, I did this research, we have this knowledge and now we’re going to implement that into public policy.”

Sheeran didn’t really think about research when she came to Florida Poly. Instead she saw it as part of a familiar sequence in life where one goes to college and then enters the workforce. Her plan is a little different now. She said she’s looking forward to getting a master’s degree and eventually a doctorate.

“I really do love school and education and learning things,” said Sheeran. “One of the things that drew me to Florida Poly was that we could make our own traditions.”

Now Sheeran is proving she can also make her own path. She’s applied to several graduate schools and has already been accepted to Rutgers University and the City University of New York. She said she’ll make her choice soon for the fall of 2019.

Lydia Guzman
Assistant Director of Communications