The Dermcare Gap Year Program provides recent college graduates with the unique opportunity to gain firsthand experience in the setting of a private dermatology practice. Through this paid program, gap year interns learn to assist in a variety of clinical and administrative tasks that help keep a medical practice functional. We aim to employ reliable, self-motivated graduates looking to gain one or more years of experience prior to attending medical school. We believe the lessons provided by this program will prepare our interns for the rigors of a career in medicine.

As a Gap Year Intern, you will:

  • assist in various dermatologic surgeries and procedures
  • perform surgical consultations
  • scribe for physicians during patient visits
  • coordinate patient care with outside healthcare providers
  • perform administrative tasks
  • learn about surgical and cosmetic dermatology
  • network with our doctors and staff
  • and more!


  1. Bachelor’s degree from a four year university/college
  2. At least a 1-2 year commitment before matriculating into medical school
  3. Must be able to travel to all offices (Arlington, Cambridge, Natick and Chelmsford)
  4. No medical assistant certification required
Apply Now


Blandine Nikuze (Chief gap year intern)

UMass Amherst (2019)
Major: Microbiology
Plans for career: My hope is to matriculate in medical school at some point in the next few years, and while I remain open minded to other specialties, I am strongly considering dermatology or pediatrics.
Bio: While in undergrad I was involved with infant cognition research , mentoring and tutoring. After working as an EMT for a couple of years, joining Dermcare was one of the best things that happened to me. I am excited that I get to be immersed in an environment that allows me to gain a better understanding of the everyday life of a physician, and hope to continue furthering my knowledge in dermatology. I am also interested in global and community health, particularly enabling health care accessibility in underserved communities and developing nations, teaching and mentorship. During my free time, I enjoy making up random recipes, food photography, Netflix and working out. 

Emily Ahearn

University of Miami (2020)
Major: Biochemistry and Nutrition
Admitted to: Tufts School of Medicine, UMiami Miller School of Medicine, FIU School of Medicine
Bio: As a Massachusetts native, I chose to attend the University of Miami for my undergraduate career for their strong research opportunities and unparalleled diversity, and I was not disappointed! During my time at UM, I was president of Girl Up, a campaign for the advancement of adolescent girls around the world; led a cancer epigenetics research thesis on vitamins A and C; and created content for a sexual health dissemination podcast. After graduating, I wanted to return to MA for my gap year and gain more clinical experience especially in dermatology. As I near the end of my gap year, I am incredibly grateful for the knowledge and experiences I’ve gained at DermCare. The physicians in the practice have emulated the type of doctor I aspire to be: one who is passionate, creative, and patient (no pun intended). When I’m not working, I love to cook, read, struggle through at-home pilates, and explore Boston.

Nicole Ayres

University of Massachusetts Amherst (2019)
Major: Triple major (Biology, Neuroscience, and Spanish)
Plans for career: Surgery
Admitted to: University of Massachusetts Medical School
Bio: I graduated from UMass Amherst in Spring 2019 with two bachelor’s degrees and three majors. During my time as an undergraduate, I worked as an EMT, played for my school’s club lacrosse team, volunteered at a local soup kitchen, worked in an organic chemistry teaching laboratory, and conducted my honors thesis in a neuroscience laboratory that utilized EEG technology to investigate the neural correlates of syntactic hierarchical structure building in number word phases. My time at Dermcare Physicians & Surgeons has been the most incredible learning experience I could have hoped for as a gap intern. With countless direct patient care hours, an inside look into the daily operations of a private practice, and physician mentors that truly invested in my future aspirations, I know this position has given me the tools I’ll need to succeed in medical school. This position has provided many lessons- big and small- that I will carry with me throughout my time as a medical student and beyond. In my free time, I enjoy working out, reading, kayaking, crafting, skiing, coaching a youth lacrosse team, playing with my dog, and spending time with friends and family.

Katelyn Carlson

University of Massachusetts Amherst (2019)
Major: Kinesiology
Plans for career: I plan to get my Masters in Nutrition Science and Policy and complete a Didactic program in Dietetics this coming Fall.
Bio: During my undergraduate career I worked at every gym on campus and was a founding member of Sigma Sigma Sigma sorority. I began working at Dermcare to pursue a career in medicine, but through the help of my colleagues and the advising physicians here, realized I should change course and pursue my dreams of becoming a Registered Dietician. I hope to attend a masters program in fall 2021. In my free time I enjoyed weight lifting, yoga, spinning, baking, trying new vegan recipes and hanging out with my puppy.

Mary Grace Kelley 

Boston University (BA 2019, MS 2021)
Major: Biology, Deaf Studies minor
Plans for career: Orthopedic Surgery, Sports Medicine
Admitted to: Boston University School of Medicine
Bio: As an undergraduate, I attended Boston University where I not only studied Biology and Deaf Studies, but also played Division Women’s Ice Hockey. During my senior season, we won the Beanpot Championship for the first time in 40 years. I was named the 2019 BU Scholar-Athlete of the year, I received the Hockey East Conference Distinguished Scholar Award in 2019, and I was named to the Hockey East All-Academic Team all four years. My passion for athletics and science merged as I set my sights on medical school with the hopes of helping future generations of athletes recover from injury. While balancing school and hockey, I also served as a research assistant at BU’s Eichenbaum Cognitive Neurobiology Lab. I began working as a medical assistant at Dermcare in the summer after graduation, I gained essential hands-on experience working with patients and assisting in dermatological surgeries. My time at Dermcare was nothing short of inspirational. I proceeded to pursue an opportunity to work at Newton Wellesley Hospital’s Sports Medicine department during the summer of 2020 before enrolling in a Master’s of Medical Science program at Boston University. I plan to complete my thesis over the summer of 2021 investigating the treatments for osteoporosis caused by female athlete triad syndrome. With much excitement, I will then matriculate at Boston University School of Medicine in the fall of 2021. In my spare time I enjoy staying active, spending time with family and friends, and baking.     

Ekim Otucu

University of Massachusetts Amherst, Commonwealth Honors College (2019)
Major: Neuroscience, Minor Biology
Plans for career: Medicine, Surgery
Bio: I graduated from UMass Amherst in the spring of 2019 where I studied neuroscience and biology with a special interest in the biological basis of behavior. While at UMass, I worked in the Rudd Adoption Lab, studying the relationships between adoptees and their adoptive and birth parents. I also did research at the Jamaica Plains VA working on neurodegenerative disorders. I spent summers working as an EMT for UMass EMS and on an ambulance where I developed my passion for helping others. I was recruited to UMass to row crew, where I was a part of our first ever grand finals appearance at the ACRA National Championship as well as the program’s first qualified 8+ at the Head of the Charles in almost 15 years. Since graduation, I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Dermcare, gaining hands-on experience in a clinical setting. Working with the providers here has taught me a great deal about the provider I hope to one day become; one who combines knowledge and compassion to achieve a high level of patient care. In my spare time, I enjoy hiking with my friends and my dog in the White Mountains, winter sports, exercising, and playing music with my band.

Cassandra Valas

Northeastern University (2019)
Plans for career: I plan to do a masters or PhD program in chemical engineering or biomedical engineering before applying to medical school later in life.
Mother of two boys, 3 years and 3 months old. Plans to attend medical school farther down the line after a masters or PhD program. During my time as an undergraduate, I worked as an Personal Care Aide for the elderly and a Veterinary Assistant, and played NCAA women’s club water polo. In my free time, I enjoy cooking, yoga, swimming, surfing, skiing, hiking, reading, and spending time with friends and family.

Miranda Yu

Tufts University (2021)
Major: Biology
Plans for career: Medicine… possibly Dermatology (?!)
Admitted to: Applying in June!
Bio: While technically class of 2021, I graduated from Tufts University early in December of 2020 with a major in Biology. During my time at Tufts, I was involved in an assortment of activities that ranged from conducting my own research on hospital food nutrition at the Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging in Boston, to volunteering and leading medical service trips in rural Guatemala, to studying wild chimpanzee hunting behavior from data collected at the Kibale National park in Uganda. Through all of these experiences, I have come to appreciate/recognize how public health issues share commonalities across the world and bring us together. I joined Dermcare this past January because I was hoping to learn more about what medicine, but more specifically dermatology, is all about in a clinical setting. During my time at Dermcare, I’ve learned so much from all the providers at our network, who have been extremely nurturing and always take the time to teach you about their work. I’ve also learned an incredible amount from all the other gap year interns and nurses here, who are all amazing in their own way. When I am not at work, I enjoy working out, talking to my plants, cooking for my friends, and painting/drawing!

Yuying Zhang (Chloe)

UMass Amherst (2020)
Major: Chemistry
Plans for career: I aspired to pursue a MD/MBA program in the future
Bio:  As a first-generation college student and an immigrant, I am passionate to serve underprivileged communities. During my four years at UMass Amherst, I did research with Dr. Julian Tyson devised an affordable test