Adriana M. Padilla Roger is currently pursuing her bachelors degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology at the University of Puerto Rico Río Piedras. She is passionate about the brain, conducting research and advocating for neuroscience and neuroscientists alike. Combining her experience in journalism and her concern for the aftermath of Hurricane María that left Puerto Ricans physically and mentally devastated, she is creating a zine that be a resource for understanding and coping with mental disorders. The title, "¡Temporal! Mind over Storm" is a reference to overcoming both Hurricane María and mental health disorders.
Puerto Rico is a Caribbean island with a bold spirit and a resilient soul. Located in the Atlantic Ocean, its inhabitants descend from Spanish, Indigenous and African races. Today, they form a kaleidoscopic mosaic of genetic phenotypes that is greatly admired and respected in a society where diversity and intersectionality are critical for moving forward.
A country once stereotyped as one of the happiest cultures on Earth, for the longest time has been facing a serious mental health crisis. Now in the aftermath of Hurricane María, inhabitants are coping with an increment in suicides and patients suffering from severe depression, as well as other psycho-pathologies.
Under the false leadership of a systematically corrupt government, the educational and healthcare systems are struggling. For the past decade, economic cut-backs, lack of proper funding and a shift in priorities away from the people and into the pockets of politicians have seriously put on damp on the state of the island’s mental health.
The zine is slated for completion in Fall of 2018 to be distributed during peak hurricane season and to be shared at the annual Society for Neuroscience meeting.
Curious about the other Scicomm Grant recipients? Read about their projects!