This week, we present two stories about identity, from a neuroscientist's encounters with racism to an OB-GYN's struggle with her feelings about motherhood. Part 1: After a thoughtless remark from a colleague, neuroscientist Devon Collins reflects on the way racism has impacted his life and science. Part 2: OB-GYN Veronica Ades tries to save a pregnant woman’s life in South Sudan, while struggling with her own feelings about motherhood. Devon Collins is a neuroscientist, podcaster, and educator from the Midwest. Currently a PhD candidate at the Rockefeller University, he studies how common genetic variation affects the brain’s responses to drugs and stress. He is one-third of the team behind Science Soapbox, a podcast about science and how it interacts with our personal and political lives. Passionate about making the future of STEM more diverse and inclusive, Devon also works as an educator in a STEM-focused after-school program for high school students from low-resource backgrounds. When he’s not doing science, talking science, or teaching science, you can find him baking, running, container gardening, or napping on his sofa with his cat and dog. Veronica Ades, MD, MPH is a board-certified obstetrician-gynecologist. She attended medical school at the State University of New York at Downstate in Brooklyn, NY, and obtained residency training in obstetrics and gynecology at the Albert Einstein School of Medicine in the Bronx, NY. After residency, she obtained a Master’s degree in Public Health with a concentration in Quantitative Methods at the Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Ades then completed a three-year fellowship in Reproductive Infectious Disease at the University of California, San Francisco, in which she lived and worked in rural Uganda, and conducted research on placental malaria in HIV-infected and –uninfected women. Dr. Ades also completed a Certificate in Comparative Effectiveness at the NYU School of Medicine. Dr. Ades has worked with Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders on assignments in Aweil, South Sudan in 2012 and 2016 and in Irbid, Jordan in 2013. Dr. Ades is currently an Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Director of Global Women’s Health at the New York University School of Medicine (NYUMC). Her clinical work is at the New York Harbor VA and at Gouverneur Health. At NYUMC, Dr. Ades has created an educational and research partnership with Korle Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra, Ghana. She is also the Director of the EMPOWER Clinic for Survivors of Sex Trafficking and Sexual Violence at Gouverneur Health on the Lower East Side. Dr. Ades’ main research focus is on post-sexual trauma gynecologic care. She runs the Empower Lab at the College of Global Public Health at NYU, where she has active research projects on sexual and gender-based violence, intimate partner violence, military sexual trauma, and global women’s health.
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