Dr. Mónica Ramírez-Andreotta has been a part of the University of Arizona Superfund Research Program (UA SRP) since 2005, first as Research Translation Core Coordinator, and then as a Training Core Fellow earning her PhD in 2012. She then left to train as a post-doc and become Assistant Professor of Health Sciences at Northeastern University in Boston, MA working in the Social Science Environmental Health Research Institute there. In 2015 Ramírez-Andreotta returned to the UA as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Soil, Water, and Environmental Science, and she continues to collaborate with UA SRP with seed funding from the Center for Environmentally Sustainable Mining. Following the success of her dissertation project, Gardenroots: The Dewey-Humboldt AZ Garden Project, Ramírez-Andreotta has continued her work investigating the uptake of metals by edible plants.
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Dr. Monica Ramirez-Andreotta’s hands have been full bringing hands-on scientific demonstrations to the classroom, as well as taking part in special events in support of her community engagement and environmental justice work with the University of Arizona Superfund Research Program (UA SRP). Dr. Ramirez-Andreotta spent a Saturday afternoon this April talking about environmental health justice and community gardening at the UA Biosphere II in Oracle, Arizona. Her hands-on presentation was part of the Biosphere II Special Saturday Series entitled, What If, with the series theme for April asking the Earth Month-inspired question: “What if we can be better environmental stewards?”
In her presentation, Dr. Ramirez-Andreotta, UA SRP Research Translation Core Principle Investigator, asked the very specific question: “What if we could achieve environmental health justice?” She defined environmental health justice and talked about the impact of soil and water contaminants on the local crops of communities living in environmentally compromised spaces, or neighboring to hazardous waste sites.
She provided demonstrations from her Gardenroots project, an on-going Citizen Science project that examines the safety of home gardening throughout Arizona and in Massachusetts. The demonstration attracted 182 Biosphere II visitors over a two-hour period. Dr. Ramirez-Andreotta states: “It was an honor to be invited! I was delighted to have an opportunity to demonstrate how gardens are excellent platforms for environmental public health citizen science work.”
Mónica Ramírez-Andreotta, SRP investigator, was invited to give a presentation on the impacts of the Gold King Mine spill at the 2nd Annual Desert Produce Safety Collaboration Conference in Yuma, AZ on January 12, 2016.
Leaders Across Borders (LaB), a leadership program created by the United States-Mexico Border Health Commission to improve the health of communities located along the border, recently selected University of Arizona Superfund Research Program (UA SRP) Research Translation Core (RTC) Principle Investigator, Dr. Monica Ramirez-Andreotta, to participate in their 2016 program.