My Experience as a Varsa Health Intern

Rathnam Venkat joined us from the University of Pennsylvania this summer as a patient engagement and clinical research intern. You can read more about his adventures work at Varsa and see what he learned below.

My name is Rathnam Venkat, and I was an intern at Varsa Health this summer. I am a rising sophomore at the University of Pennsylvania pursuing a dual degree in Finance from the Wharton School and Biology from the College of Arts and Sciences. I have always been interested in health care technology and entrepreneurship. Varsa Health gave me an ideal environment to work with a committed team in a creative environment.

Though I worked remotely from Philadelphia, I always felt like I was right there in the office. The support system at Varsa was one of my favorite parts of my experience. I had weekly calls with Steve Sprieser, a co-founder of the company, and I was always given work that catered to my interests, had an impact, and helped the company in a tangible way.

I had a variety of tasks while at Varsa. For the first few weeks, I focused on research related to patient-reported outcomes, helping to compile a database of assessments regarding mental health and recovery, two domains that Varsa’s software platform initially focused on. These measures are an essential part of the product as patients and consumers in a health organization fill out the surveys on a regular basis. The survey data then becomes available on Varsa’s platform for the provider to monitor the patient’s health in real time.

Not only did I help with the survey database, but I also contributed to Varsa’s marketing collateral through blog posts and whitepapers. I worked with another team member, Ajeet, to write a part of a study analyzing the need for digitization in in health care. I realized that Varsa’s product is more necessary than ever due to the shift towards technology, and more specifically towards population health management.

Lastly, I explored new areas where I previously had little experience. I worked with Miraj, a co-founder, to add a list of partners and their logos to the Varsa website. To do this, I learned HTML and CSS, providing me an insight into web development, a skill that I was always curious about. Moreover, Miraj gave me the opportunity to voice my opinions in meetings on product management.

I really enjoyed my experience at Varsa Health this summer. The degree of trust that the team gives interns is incredible and I felt like I had a real impact on the company’s progress. I worked with passionate individuals who are determined to change the nature of patient-reported outcomes measures. My work at Varsa helped me frame my interests as well, as I am now more interested in health care technology. Ultimately, Varsa Health gave me a meaningful internship experience that complemented my studies at Penn.

Rathnam Venkat 
Varsa Health Summer 2015 Intern

Originally published at on August 23, 2015.

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