Internship at Lemuel Martinez’s 13th Judicial District Attorney’s Office

by Dante Gurule, Forensic Biology

On the summer of May 2019 I interned at the Lemuel Martinez’s 13th Judicial District Attorney’s Office in Albuquerque, New Mexico. There is a DA office in each of the three counties including Sandoval, Cibola and Valencia. I worked for Sandoval County as it was the closest to my house. At the DA office there are many attorneys that work under Lemuel Martinez. These attorneys represent the State in criminal cases for all cases whether it be a felony or misdemeanor offense. During this internship I got to assist these attorneys with building case files, as well as observe them in both the District court, for felony offenses, and Magistrate court, for misdemeanor and below offenses. In preparing cases I would work with the different legal assistants and take on my own cases as I would prepare them for a variety of attorneys. Most cases I prepared were domestic violence cases including battery, deprivation of property, violation of restraining orders, etc.

The Sandoval District Attorney’s Office

The majority of my classes for my forensic biology degree did not provide much knowledge for this internship as my degree has a heavier emphasis on the sciences. However, the mock trials done in both my Instrument Analysis and Trace Evidence class as well as my Investigative Methods and Forensics Science class allowed me to understand the procedures and components of a trial. My Intro to US Legal System and US history classes gave me a good foundational understanding of our laws and constitution. I think it’s important to note I am yet to take the procedural law class for my degree which would have been very useful. I think my class work did show me the importance of forensics in law and how they coincide.

This internship was important for both my career and educational plans. After I graduate I plan to go to law school and this internship at the DA office not only introduced me to what Attorneys do but also allowed me to put my foot in the door to intern again with them while in Law School so I could get more hands on work with the Attorneys. This internship was overall a great experience and I am glad I got to work there.

The Magistrate Courthouse
Sandoval County District Court

International Internship with Vive Peru

The forensic biology program has so many possible career options, which may cause some difficulty in finding an internship if a career path is uncertain. Thankfully I have always known I wanted to work in the medical field so this was the perfect internship for me. My internship with Vive Peru combined my love of travel with my desire to learn more about the medical field. With this program, I was able to shadow doctors from several different specialties in multiple hospitals and clinics in Trujillo, Peru, assist with large medical campaigns, and volunteer in a small community adjacent to Trujillo.

Embry-Riddle Forensic Biology student travels to Peru to assist in vaccinations

Due to the nature of the program, shadowing doctors in hospitals in a foreign country, it was very structured and the only decisions I could make was which doctor I wanted to shadow that day. However, creativity could be used for the volunteer efforts. I could do all of the decision making for what activities we were going to do with the children we worked with, with only one constraint: the activity had to be related to public health. Due to the structure of the program, the learning objectives were set out for each of the hospitals we visited based on what the previous volunteers experienced in the past.

My microbiology course at ERAU was beyond helpful when working in the lab and explaining what was going on to my interpreter who did not understand any medical or biological sciences. I was able to point out differences between the way the labs run in Peru versus what we were taught in class. Many of the differences throughout the hospitals and clinics, not just in the labs, were due to lack of funding and supplies. It was definitely a culture shock to see the lack of sanitation and sterilization, but that only happened because they did not have enough supplies to use a new set of gloves or dental tools or even agar plates for each patient.

I am so grateful for this internship and opportunity. Peru was a beautiful place with beautiful people. The program does an amazing job of connecting volunteers with the community and making a real difference in the community. Many of the patients at the free medical campaigns said the only go see the doctors when these medical campaigns were held as they could not afford to see a doctor otherwise. The children in the community where I volunteered are so grateful for us and were so sad to see us leave. Learning about medicine and watching doctors work was amazing but seeing the change that my contribution made to the community was much more fulfilling.

My Internship at the BioMechanics Physical Therapy Clinic

At the Physical Therapy Clinic

At the Physical Therapy Clinic

My internship at The BioMechanics Physical Therapy clinic was filled with learning opportunities and I was able to expand my experience in many different tasks. Through this opportunity I began to develop my skills in patient treatment, bedside manner, and the fundamentals of physical therapy, as a whole.

My official title was a technician for the physical therapists and my job consisted of checking on patients, moving patients from one exercise to the next, teaching how certain equipment and exercises should be used or performed, and setting them up for modalities and/or heat or ice at the end of their session. As a tech, I was always on the floor making sure everything was running smoothly between the patients, as well as double checking that the therapists were not getting backed up with patients or extra work that the technicians could have been working on.

My studies and previous classes within my program for a Forensic Biology degree, prepared me for this internship by providing me with the correct information in regards to general biology and anatomy and physiology, so that I had knowledge of different muscle groups and their mechanics, as well as allowing me to utilize the business demeanor and professional manner that was implemented within several classes. Overall, I am very grateful for my position at The BioMechanics clinic and I have gained valuable experience, skills and knowledge, especially involving patient treatment in physical therapy that I will be able to use regardless of what my future entails.

Alternative Spring Break- Mexico Addition

Spring breaks in college have a stigma that they involve partying and going crazy, but let me tell you, there are alternatives. This past spring break I had the opportunity to travel to Mexico and volunteer my time. I went with Chi Alpha, which is one of the clubs on campus that I am involved in, and it was amazing!

Meixo Girls

We left on Friday after classes finished and drove down to San Luis Mexico, which is right under Yuma. It was a five-hour drive filled with ice cream, singing, and friends. When we crossed the border, the first thing we did was meet up with the group at the best taco stand. Then we continued on to the boy’s home where we would be staying.

Meixo Tacos

The next morning we had breakfast then split our group (we had around 30 people), some went to build roofs on people’s homes, and others went to host a carnival at a soup kitchen. I went and helped host the carnival. We got to sing with the kids, put on a skit, and have games for them to play! After that, we went back for lunch. After lunch had a water fight with the boys at the orphanage and then went to go give beans to people whom could not leave there homes. During that after noon, I saw extreme poverty and some people who were struggling with hard things but they had a hopeful outlook and joy about life. And it has a way of reconsidering your situation.

Mexico ChurchMexico Dump

On Sunday, I got up early to watch the sunrise then I was off to Church. This year I had the opportunity to share a little bit of my testimony at Church, which was an amazing experience, and something I will never forget. After church we went back, some went to finish roofs, and others handed out the rest of the beans at the poorest part of town. In the evening, we had a fiesta with the boys at the home and served them ice cream. After that, our team went out for those amazing tacos again.

Mexico Sunrise

Monday we packed up and headed home. Before crossing the border my car stopped and got some fresh tortillas and juice boxes to help the borderline go faster. We even ended up pushing the car in the line to save gas and help it not overheat. By 5 pm I was back in my hall on campus which the rest of spring break in front of me.

Mexico Reagan

Even though I did not have a tradition spring break or the opportunity to go home I had the opportunity to give myself and my heart away which means more to me than I can explain with words. So just know, spring break does not have to be a constant party it can be many other things too. Spring break is for you, so don’t get trapped in the mindset that other people try to portray it to be.

Havasupai- A Pinterest Dream

So I don’t know if any of you love Pinterest, but I sure do. And in the past year Havasupai and the beautiful waterfalls there keep popping up. Well over spring break I had to the opportunity to fulfill all my Pinterest dreams and see them! Now they are just as beautiful as you think but there is one part of seeing them that nobody seems to talk about, the 12-mile hike in. There are other ways to get down to see them such as mule and helicopter but that is going to add quite a bit of money to your trips.


12 miles in and 12 miles out with all the clothing, food, and sleeping gear you will need can seem a little daunting and it is, but it is worth it. Seeing the beautiful scenery and having very little people around helps create a breath taking view. Now this hike is not for new hikers and people who are not prepared, but it is one worth training for. And there are some of the beautiful reasons why.

Supai village

  • You get to sleep on the edge of a waterfall and next to a river!

Supai campSupai Girls

  • The pictures are pretty crazy

Supai mooney and girls

  • You will hike more than 30 miles in 3 days and that’s really cool

Supai sign

  • The water is beyond amazing

Supai Jumping

  • You can join the few people who have conquered Havasupai Supai MooneySupai Water

A Letter From Your RA

Dear Residents/Soon-to-be-Residents.

Hi! I am that seemingly scary older student that said “Hello” to you on move in day, I am the person who can get you into trouble for being too loud, but I am also one of the best resources at your disposal while you live on campus. I have been trained in how to get someone to fix your toilet, get your cloths out of a broken washer, and who to point you to when you need help with class. Nevertheless, I am also here to be a listening ear, help you feel safe on the floor, and solve most all problems you have, whether they are emotional, with your roommate, or family. I know it might seem scary when you see me walking up the stairs or in the dining hall but I am not your enemy. Sure, there will be times that you fail your health and safety inspections (HSI) or are written up for being loud during twenty-four hour quite hours, and yes those times are awkward. But they are to help you grow. Failing your HSI is no fun and I do come back, but it is better to learn that the pink stuff at the bottom of your shower is not left over shampoo and your toilet is not supposed to look like that. And being written up is frustrating I admit it, but learning to be studious and respect the needs of the others around you is a lesson that you will never forget.

Speaking of things you will never forget RA programs, no, they are not mandatory, but yes, they are highly recommended. Programs hosted by RAs are not always informational, and most of the time you get free food. Your RA loves it when you come to their programs and it’s even better when you bring friends to share in the fun with. The point of programs are residents. Food for the residents, games for the residents, all in hopes to build a community where people know their neighbors and floor mates. I get it they can be awkward but try them you might be pleasantly surprised with the outcome.

I am a big supporter in getting to know your RA, even if that means just saying “Hi” on your way to class, but it is really up to you. You can talk to your RA or not. You can go to class or not. You get to decided what your year looks like, take every advantage to make it great, because college is short and your time living on campus and with that community is even shorter.

Best Wishes,

Your RA

Lets Talk About the “Riddle Ratio”

Let’s talk about the “riddle ratio”, I am sure if you were like me looking at this school the “riddle ratio” freaks you out just a tad which is okay. To start off, if you do not know what the “riddle ratio” is, it explains the number of male to female students at Riddle. Currently at Riddle the population is around 25% female and 75% male, vastly different from most universities what are 50% male and 50% female. At Riddle, the students have adapted a term to address the gender difference and that my friend is the “riddle ratio”.

I want to be honest with you all; the “riddle ration” is a thing. Your floor freshman year might have one other suite of girls with four others being male, and a few classes might only have two girls in them. But take it from,it’s not bad. Yes you receive a lot of male attention, especially the first few weeks of school, but you gain so much more.

Being surrounded by males most of the time gives you some amazing things.

  1. You will make amazing girlfriends. And there is a strong community  around campus
  2. You will gain so many brothers. Once the boys realize you won’t date them, they turn into brother and have your best interest at heart, and you can always count on them
  3. You will barely ever open the door to the library or dining hall for yourself. People are really polite and considerate, and it will become normal to you really fast, and when you go back home and people don’t do open the door for you it will seem strange
  4. You forget that mostly males surround you. It starts to feel normal and you won’t realize until you go home for break and see girls all over the place.

Now this is my experience and everyone has their own, but being at Riddle has given me so many guys that turned into brothers, some of the best friends I could ask for, and such a unique and special culture that is is weird to go home. Although a large gender gap can be scary don’t let it turn you away from an amazing school because you are scared!


Organization Anyone?

Organization anyone? Being in the midst of midterms, clubs going crazy, and it almost being spring break life is pretty hectic. The way I combat the stress of life is by staying organized. I believe that everything has a place and that everything should be in its place. So I have a few helpful hints to keep the stress down and the productivity high.

  • Planners. Live by them. This can be in a physical planner or a phone calendar, either way they are great ways to keep track of meetings, tests, and due dates. Personally, I have a physical planner, a desk calendar for events, and a wall calendar for important things such as birthdays.20170222_123305
  • Keep a binder or folders for all past and current assignments. Your never know when you will need to look back on an assignment or pass it off to someone else. Avoid papers cluttering your desk, backpack, and keep them ordered by date and time.
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  • Color-coding. I am a firm believer in this. Every class, club, responsibility has a color and it is easy to see quickly what is coming and needs to be done.20170222_123247


These are a few things that work for me, and they might not work for everybody. If you can find a way to remove the excess clutter from your life you just might see a reduction of stress in your life.

Student Health or “Student Death”

Being sick sucks. Being sick is college might be even worse. The first time I got sick at college was last year with a cold. At home, my mom would make sure that I taken car of, comfortable, had medicine, and I also felt like I was in good hands. Then all of a sudden you’re at school and it’s just you. Instead of your mom checking in on you it’s your roommates, you call your parents to  be diagnosed over the phone (yes this has happened more than once, Thanks mom!), and then give money to friends to go pick you up medicine.

If you get really sick, or have been sick for a while there is the wellness center. My family had always joked and called the wellness center (the on campus doctors office) student death, because you only go in when you are really sick. This past week I had my first experience at the wellness center. I scheduled an appointment and went for it. When I arrived, the office was really nice, and the nurse who checked me in made me feel a really comfortable. I think the best part was that I was in the wellness center for maybe 15 minutes. I checked in, talked to the nurse, then the doctor, then was free to leave. It was easy and painless.

Being sick in college is an adjustment and it can feel very lonely. But you are not alone. There are resources around campus such as the wellness center, and the housing department that can help you both get better and talk to your professors to help give you time to heal. Also take advantage of your community. They will be there to grab you food or medicine, because they know you would return the favor. Although it’s not your comfy couch at home with your mom taking care of you, being sick at school is not as hard as you think it will be. Because let’s be honest, everyone gets sick.

3 day weekends= Freedom!

A three-day weekend to college students is the equivalent of Halloween for children! It is a beautiful time where school stress diminishes (until late the night before classes) and you are free to have fun and play. I don’t know about everyone else, but being at school with all my friends minus the actual study part is one of my favorite things. Don’t get me wrong classes are interesting, but the unique freedom that comes when it’s a three day weekend is one for the books. As usual, I fled town, with some of my favorite people. I drove up to Moab Utah with my friends to play at Arches and Canyonlands National Park for the weekend.


The fifteen or more hours in the car for the weekend were well worth it. We played in the snow, had a bouncy castle in our hotel, and saw some breathe taking arches!


Sunday we ventured up to Canyonlands, which happened to be in a cloud. We tried two view points and could not outrun the fog so head back to Arches National Park where we got to play some more.


Being able to get in the car and drive to Utah on a weekend is one thing that I never thought was possible before college but now it is a common occurrence in my life. The National Parks and amazing opportunities that surround Prescott and Arizona as a whole are amazing and a great bonus to riddle. Now don’t worry, if driving 6 hours to Utah to look at some arches is not your thing that is okay, there are hundreds of others things to do on a three day weekend. Some binge watch Netflix (gotta catch up on the shows you don’t have time for during the week), some go to Phoenix, and others mess around on campus. No matter what you are doing three day weekends are always a memorable time and something college kids live for!