Ciencia Boricua Profiles

Every month we profile the work of an outstanding CienciaPR member or discuss a topic of relevance to our community

Angela Ginorio: Building bridges between feminism and science

Mónica Ivelisse Feliú-Mójer's picture
Dr. Angela Ginorio with her PhD student Noralis Rodríguez Coss (Department of Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies at the University of Washington).
Dr. Angela Ginorio (right) with her PhD student Noralis Rodríguez Coss (Department of Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies at the University of Washington).

Don Tony Rodriguez’s Parrots

Ana Teresa Rodríguez's picture
Mr. Tony Rodríguez Vidal / Picture provided by Ana Teresa Rodríguez

I bet a “mallorca con azúcar” from La Bombonera, that if you ask anyone the name of an endemic animal from Puerto Rico, many would name the Puerto Rican parrot (Amazona vittata). One of the first scientists responsible for people knowing about this bird and recognizing its endangered situation, was my grandfather, Don José A. Rodríguez Vidal (Don Tony; 1925-2009).

Michelle Martínez Montemayor: a Borinqueña in the fight against cancer

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A stellar Borinqueña: Dr. Michelle Martínez Montemayor

In the month of November, Ciencia Puerto Rico's montly story is joining the anniversary celebration of the blog Borinqueña. Use #Borinqueña to share this story.

The enthusiasm and passion that Dr. Michelle Martínez Montemayor exudes for her work, family and life can be easily felt when talking to her. Michelle is a Borinqueña from Bayamón. She was born and raised in the “City of Cowboys”, as Bayamón is also known in Puerto Rico, and today works as a professor and investigator at the Central University of the Caribbean (CUC).

Idalia Ramos: chronicles of a woman in physics and engineering

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Professor Idalia Ramos knew at an early age that her main interest was science: "My parents were teachers, and in particular, my father was a science teacher”. Born in a rural area in Barranquitas, Puerto Rico and in a family where both parents were educators and activists in the community, Ramos read a lot and always had an interest in math and science.

Dr. José R. Fernández: Training scientists from the Heart of Dixie

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Dr. José R. Fernández

A little about ancestral genetics, genuine passion for research, the absence of absolute truths, and the unique reward of training the new generation of future scientists.  These are just a few of the topics and thoughts that Dr. José Fernández shared with CienciaPR.

JOUST: A new space to diseminate undergraduate research

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"One of the pleasures of research is when a refereed journal accepts to publish your technical work." says Dr. Mauricio Cabrera Ríos, professor at the Industrial Engineering Department, University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez, when he explains why the idea of creating the Journal of Undergraduate Research Students (JOUST) arose.

Ubaldo M. Córdova: transforming research culture in Puerto Rico

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Dr. Ubaldo Córdova wants to make sure that young scientists and faculty in Puerto Rico have a support system for professional development.

Dr. Ubaldo M. Córdova knew from a very early age that he wanted to be a scientist. He confirmed this thought when he had to complete a special project for his geography class in high school. For this project, a shy and introvert Ubaldo, built a geography map of Puerto Rico. He designed a very precise map that marked the Island’s municipalities using colorful sand. Based on the sophistication of his design- where the different colors of sand did not mix and every piece fit perfectly- his teacher told him that he would become an engineer.

Roberto Torretti: A Life Dedicated to the Philosophy of Science

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Dr. Roberto Torretti y su esposa, la Dra. Carla Cordua

A quick glance at the history of science is enough to notice its enormous progress, especially in the last 100 years. As theories, laws, hypotheses, models, data, and speculations about the natural world are developed, revised and discarded by scientists, they have transformed into highly sub-specialized professionals.

Yoira Díaz-Sanabria: from environmental engineering to nuclear energy

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Engineer Yoira Díaz-Sanabria


Engineer Yoira Díaz Sanabria was always attracted to science, especially biology and chemistry. “My mother was a biology teacher and science is in my blood”. She considered going into medicine or medical technology, but at the time to decide for college she chose to study chemical engineering.

Yoira is originally from Las Piedras, the city of artisans. She was raised and attended school in eastern Puerto Rico. When the time for college came around, based on her decision to pursue engineering, her parents did not hesitate to send her to University of Puerto Mayagüez, where they knew she would receive the best education.

Larissa Avilés Santa: from the clinic to public health

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Dr. Larissa Avilés Santa during a medical trip to Guatemala. Photo courtesy of Dr. Larissa Avilés Santa.

From a young age, Dr. Larissa Avilés Santa knew she wanted to study the human body. “When I was in fourth or fifth grade I remember opening an Anatomy atlas and how fascinated I was by each illustration. The part of the book that caught my attention was the one about the male and female reproductive systems, and the explanation about the menstrual cycle and pregnancy,” she says. It was back then that her interest in endocrinology was born.