By Rene "Epi Ren" Najera
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Stories of my life on my path to becoming an epidemiologist and stories from my adventures as one. I was born in northern Mexico many, many years ago, and life has brought me to the northeast United States. I'm now and American, a husband, and so many more things than I was when I left the US-Mexico border to seek a better life and expand my career. In 2003, while working full-time, I started an adventure into being an epidemiologist. I learned about diseases and conditions and how to study them and combat them. It was rough, and I sometimes thought I wasn't going to make it. I got my master of public health (MPH) degree in 2007. I then worked for a state health department for six years before being accepted into the doctor of public health (DrPH) program at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. I'm in my second year there now, and that has been an adventure as well. The purpose of this blog is to practice my public speaking skills and my ability to tell stories. While a lot of public health work is about collecting and analyzing data, a lot of it should be how to interpret the data and explain it to people who need to know. That requires the skill of telling a coherent story. This podcast is my attempt at getting better at it. So what will you hear? You'll hear tiny stories from my life as well as some presentations I've given on different epidemiological and public health subjects. It goes without saying that the content of the podcasts does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of my school, my employers, my friends, or my family. It's all me. Thanks for listening, and enjoy.
||CleanEpidemiological Podcast S0E3: Hi, I’m a Doctor||A quick 9-minute story of last Wednesday, the day I successfully defended my doctoral dissertation. It was quite a "day of days," and it ended very well. It brought together five years of hard work. So what's next? Listen to find out!||7/5/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanEpidemiological Podcast S0E2: The Weight of the Evidence||On today's podcast, I talk to you about a recent tragedy in our family and how it helped me understand anti-vaccine parents a little more. Not completely, but just enough to realize that there is very little in the way of a debate that one can have with||7/12/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanEpidemiological Podcast S0E1: The Perfect Epidemiological Surveillance System||Today, I thought I'd share with you a 15-minute presentation I gave in Mexico City last about two weeks ago. It was on a paper I wrote based off a previous blog post. I talk about what I imagine to be the perfect system for keeping track of the populati||7/2/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanTalking Tuesday on a Friday: June Update!||A few minutes where I catch you up on the craziness around me. Nothing bad, mostly good... Thanks for your time. Hope you enjoy it.||6/2/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanPodcast: October 2016 Update||Yeah, yeah… It’s been a while. I missed you too. Here’s 12 minutes of me catching you up on what happened this summer with dad getting cancer, me picking up cycling and swimming, and taking some exams. Also, there is something about Puerto Rico an||10/4/2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanTalking Tuesday: Spanish Interview on Flu Edition||Back in 2010, right before the flu season started, the bosses at the health department allowed me to do an interview with an AM radio station out of Washington, DC. The interviewer was awesome, and she really did a good job of asking pertinent questions||5/24/2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanTalking Tuesday: Catch-Up Edition||The best kinds of friends are those who you can lose contact with for months and then catch-up with quickly over some coffee or hot tea or hot chocolate... Or a beer. In this episode, I try to catch-up with you after being gone a while.||5/17/2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanTalking Tuesday, On A Saturday, In A Blizzard||What else was I going to do while I waited out the great Northeast Blizzard of 2016 but do a podcast? And what is a better way to do it than to invite a couple of friends to chat with? I used a new app called ZCast to record a chat with Briana Morgan a||1/23/2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanTalking Tuesday: Norovirus||If you have ever had Norovirus, then you will remember it for a while. Let me tell you about it, and tell you to wash your hands once, twice, and three times. Listen to this, then go wash your hands. If you want to download the mp3 file, click here.||9/8/2015||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanTalking Tuesday: My Spanish is not very pretty these days||Growing up, mom used to make me speak English well or Spanish well, but never both. I thought I spoke good Spanish, until I came to Colombia. My Spanish is different, and, in translating a document from English to Spanish, I learned my written Spanish n||7/1/2015||Free||View in iTunes|