Jessica Zolton

Jessica Zolton, DO

Clinical Corner logoI am a third-year clinical fellow in the Department of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility (REI) at NICHD. While there are numerous opportunities at NIH, it may be difficult to navigate due to the significant size and complexities inherent to such a large institution.

I became a member of the NIH Fellows Committee (FelCom) to increase my involvement in the NIH community and to serve as a bridge between the basic science and clinical fellows. I encourage all fellows to consider becoming a member of FelCom to enrich your fellowship experience, build professional relationships, and discuss policies and programs that impact fellowship training.   

I am a native of Northeastern Ohio and earned my Bachelor of Science degree at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. I attended Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM) in Erie, Pennsylvania and quickly discovered that I was destined for a life in the field of obstetrics and gynecology.

During my OBGYN residency at Summa Akron City Hospital, I became increasingly interested in the ever-evolving specialty that is REI. The issues encountered in patients with infertility may be genetic, anatomical, or endocrine-based, and clinical practice is constantly evolving due to the work of dedicated reproductive scientists and advances in technology and lab protocols.

My interest led me to complete an academic fellowship in OBGYN at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio. I came to NIH as a staff gynecologist where my position evolved to clinical fellow the following year. I have been at NIH for almost four years. I am grateful to have the support of my wonderful husband, Devon, and my curious boys, Graham, 4, and Leo, 2, who are constantly discovering the world around them, not unlike the scientists at the NIH.

An Institutes and Centers (IC) clinical representative is a postdoctoral-level fellow who serves on the NICHD Fellows Committee on behalf of the institute’s fellow population. In general, most institutes have one basic science representative and one clinical representative. Representative appointments last for 12 months and can be renewed for an additional year. The rep also serves on the NIH-wide FelCom on our behalf.

Responsibilities of the IC representative include attending all scheduled FelCom meetings, participating on a subcommittee, disseminating information to the fellows in the IC, communicating concerns to the committee from the IC’s fellows, and coordinating the distribution of information via subcommittees.