A Web-Based Application to Visualize Homicides in Baltimore City Between 2005 and 2017

“How many African American women were killed by firearm in the Cherry Hill Community Statistical Area of Baltimore in 2016?” None. I was able to answer this question for you quickly because I have a dataset on homicides in Baltimore between 2005 and 2017. The dataset is the result of data from 2005 to 2016 collected by The Baltimore Sun and…

One Year as a Father

The story goes that my mom and dad couldn’t make it back to El Paso in time for my birth, so they went to a birthing clinic in Juarez to deliver me. Mom’s labor was long and painful, as those things tend to be. By around 8am on a cold and snowy Sunday morning, I was born. And then the…

R Programming and the New Epidemiologists

When I started working as an epidemiologist at a state health department, one of the most often used tools was the Microsoft Office Suite of programs. I used Excel for data analysis and visualization, Access to create and manage databases, Power Point to create presentations, and Word to create reports. Nevertheless, I’ve always been an early adopter when it comes…

What Love of Country Is All About

Growing up in Mexico, I was exposed to a lot of nationalistic views about that country. When I came to the US, it wasn’t that much different. In either place, I was told to love the country with all my heart, and to not see any fault in it. That’s totally the wrong way of going about loving something, or someone…

The Places Where People Are Not Exercising For Some Reason

It’s amazing what you’ll find when you dive into data. Using information from Strava and the US Census bureau, I’m pretty sure we can see the inequity in exercise between whites and African Americans in at least two cities in the United States: St. Louis and Baltimore.

A Day of Days

I did it. I successfully defended my doctoral dissertation last Wednesday and became a Doctor of Public Health (DrPH). It was the culmination of five years of learning, working, and balancing a lot of aspects of my life. I must be honest that I felt incredibly overwhelmed at times. There were several moments when I wanted to throw in the towel and walk away.

The Epi Ren Rises, Again

As you are reading this, I am in the middle of defending my doctoral dissertation. (I’m scheduling this post ahead of time. So, no, I’m not blogging while I’m taking the exam, silly.) The defense of the dissertation is the conclusion of five years of work on something that began as a crazy idea, became a dream, and then materialized…