The San Juan Daily Star
Scientific communication specialist elected fellow of top international society
Dr. Mónica Feliú Mójer serves as director of communications and scientific outreach for the nonprofit organization Ciencia Puerto Rico.
By THE STAR STAFF
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest multidisciplinary scientific society, announced Tuesday that Dr. Mónica Feliú Mójer has been elected a fellow of the organization, one of the most renowned honors in the world of science.
“I am very proud of these recognitions, especially because they are due in large part to my work communicating science in Spanish and in Puerto Rico,” Feliú Mójer said in a written statement. “I am excited to be able to use these prestigious platforms to continue promoting equity and inclusion in science, representing Puerto Rican science, and opening space for the participation of vulnerable communities in science.”
Last week the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine, an independent institution founded in 1863 that advises the United States on science, engineering and health issues, announced that the neurobiologist had joined its Standing Committee for the Advancement of Scientific Communication.
Feliú Mójer, who serves as director of communications and scientific outreach for the nonprofit organization Ciencia Puerto Rico (CienciaPR), is one of 506 experts in science, engineering and innovation who have been selected as an AAAS fellow for their scientific performance and social achievements. In its announcement, AAAS cites Feliú Mójer’s contributions as those of “an influential science communicator who inspires researchers around the world to share their science and engage in public policy and science diplomacy.”
Originally from a rural community in Vega Alta, Feliú Mójer is a neurobiologist by training but has dedicated much of her career to culturally relevant science communication and promoting the role of science in Puerto Rico as well as the civic participation of the Puerto Rican scientific community. At CienciaPR she has served as editor of more than 400 popular science articles and opinion columns in Spanish written by Puerto Rican scientists and published in the main media of the United States and Puerto Rico. In the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic, she led the development of “Aquí Nos Cuidamos,” an educational and community science and public health project, and began establishing collaborations with community leaders in Puerto Rico to strengthen their capacity to use science to serve their communities. She has led several campaigns to advocate for evidence-based decision-making and protect scientific institutions in Puerto Rico. For the past two years she has been producer and co-host of the “Jueves de Ciencia Boricua” segment of the “Qué es la que hay con Luis Herrero” program on Radio Isla 1320.
Feliú Mójer, who also serves as director of inclusive scientific communication for the nonprofit organization Science Communication Lab, has produced short films that highlight how the culture and identities of scientists from marginalized communities play an important role in their contributions to science.
In addition to Feliú Mójer, at least three other Puerto Rican scientists were named AAAS fellows. They are Dr. Arturo Hernández Maldonado, professor of chemical engineering at the University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez; Dr. Carlos Rinaldi Ramos, professor and director of the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Florida; and Dr. Víctor Torres, professor of microbiology at New York University.