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Panel: “Genetics, Genomics, and Racism” April 8

Megan Phifer-Rixey, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Biology, and Jennifer McGovern, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Political Science and Sociology, are the organizers of an online panel discussion, “Genetics, Genomics, & Racism: How Science Shapes Policy Past, Present, Future,” on April 8 at 7:30 p.m. The event is free, but registration is required.

Kiameesha Evans, MPH, MCHES, specialist professor in the Department of Health and Physical Education, will moderate the discussion, which will examine the complicated relationship between genetics, genomics, and racism. Featured speakers Krystal Tsosie and Gabriela Corona Valencia will discuss their research as doctoral candidates and consider both the legacy of past genetic technologies and the future impacts of new genomic initiatives.

Krystal Tsosie, MPH, M.A., a doctoral candidate at Vanderbilt University, is already a leader in her field. Her voice has been critical in shaping policy on genomics initiatives in indigenous communities, particularly with respect to the ethics of consent and data sovereignty. Her research integrates both efforts to improve health outcomes for indigenous communities through genomics and efforts to address the ethics of obtaining and using genomic data.

Gabriela Corona Valencia, M.A., is a doctoral candidate at the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA. Her dissertation research highlights the ways in which eugenicist ideologies continue to influence sex education curricula and initiatives that are implemented across South and East Los Angeles.

The program is sponsored by Monmouth University’s Diversity Innovation Grant program, which is supported by the Office of the Provost and the Intercultural Center with support from the School of Science and the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. The event is also possible thanks to support from student coordinator Cameron Gaines and the students of BY216-H1 (Introduction to Genetics) and SO101-H1 (Introduction to Sociology).