Just Internships for Death Investigation

Just Internships for Death Investigation

Original Release Date: February 24, 2023

In episode one of our Supporting Medicolegal Death Investigators mini season, Just Science sat down with Cory Russo, Medical Examiner Investigator at the Utah State Office of the Medical Examiner, and Chelsea Brown, Senior Deputy Coroner at the Orange County Coroner’s Office, to discuss how internship programs at medical examiner and coroner’s offices can be a great way to pursue a career in the field.    

While medicolegal death investigators are often heard about in the media, the path to join this profession is often unclear. A great way to get exposure to a career in medicolegal death investigation is through internship programs, which are available in some offices. Listen along as Cory and Chelsea discuss the requirements of applying to these internship programs, what an average day looks like for an intern, and how an internship can prepare you for a career in the MDI field.  

This episode of Just Science is funded by the National Institute of Justice’s Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (Award #: 15PNIJ-21-GK-02192-MUMU).

Some content in this podcast may be considered sensitive and may evoke emotional responses, or may not be appropriate for younger audiences. 

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Episode Citation

Keyes, K., Russo, C., & Brown, C. (2023, February 24). Just Science. Just Internships for Death Investigation. [Audio podcast episode]. The Forensic Technology Center of Excellence.

Guest Biography

Cory Russo is a board-certified Medical Examiner Investigator who currently works full-time at the Utah State Office of the Medical Examiner (OME). Prior to working as an investigator, she attended the University of Nevada, Las Vegas where she earned two bachelor's degrees in forensic science and psychology. She further continued her education at Touro Medical School, earning a master’s degree in medical health sciences. She also completed a master's degree in business administration. While enrolled in school, she completed an internship at the Clark County Coroner’s Office as well as a homicide research thesis. She also worked in the medical field including multiple emergency departments and the NICU. Following her internship and completion of her master’s program, she began working at the Clark County Coroner’s Office in Las Vegas, Nevada. Succeeding her employment at the coroner’s office, she transitioned to Des Moines, Iowa as a medical examiner investigator. Throughout her career, she has been involved in many research projects ranging from the investigation of suicide deaths to creating an HIV protein-protein interaction toolbox, for which she is a published author. Currently, she resides in Salt Lake City, Utah where she is the Internship Supervisor for the OME and strives to create an educational and interactive experience for students entering the medicolegal field. Her goal is to improve the medicolegal field while contributing positively to national public health efforts. She is currently working on completing her doctorate in health sciences from Eastern Virginia Medical School.  

Chelsea Brown has an educational background in anthropology with a master's degree in biological anthropology. In 2016, she started as an intern with the Forensics and Investigations Department at the Orange County Coroner’s Office. In 2018, she was hired as an autopsy technician with the coroner’s office. Then, she transitioned into investigations where she currently works as a Senior Deputy Coroner in investigating the county’s deaths. 

The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this podcast episode are those of the presenter(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Justice.

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