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San Antonio is home to the Spurs, the River Walk, multiple military bases, great margaritas, and some of the best Mexican food anywhere in the world.  It is also home to multiple public and private universities, the largest military medical center in the world, the largest captive primate colony in the world, two medical schools, and a growing biotech sector.  It is also the city where the intravascular stent and the titanium rib were developed.  We were pioneers in bone marrow transplants.  We developed treatments and vaccines for hepatitis.  We are world leaders in cyber security. We played an integral role in the development of the first personal computers and the microprocessor.  Perhaps most exciting, in the last 20 years, two Nobel prize winners in chemistry have been graduates of Jefferson HS.  We are known for the river, the spurs, the military, and the Mexican food, but our achievements in science and technology go largely unnoticed.

 

Last year, a group of scientists at the Health Science Center (2 students, 2 faculty), myself included, were simultaneously observing that very little communication about science occurs between scientists and those outside of our profession, and that most people outside our tiny community of scientists had any idea about how important the work we do is.  Knowing that our city is growing fast (expecting to add 1.1 million residents by 2040), we began to worry that if our community doesn’t know about our own strengths in the sciences, we wouldn’t know to build on those strengths for our future.  To remedy this issue, we founded San Antonio Science in November of 2015, in order to raise awareness, understanding, and enthusiasm for science in San Antonio.  We’ve built a strong board of directors, made up of passionate individuals in a number of professions who care deeply about science and the city of San Antonio.  It is our hope that soon San Antonio will be known for its science in the same way it is known for its Spurs and its river.  Our vision is that science will be central to the identity of San Antonio.

 

I look forward to being a part of SA Science and to helping my hometown of San Antonio develop into the best city it can be.  If you are interested in learning more about SA Science and science going on in this city, be sure to follow this blog, follow us on twitter and facebook, and come out to our events.  Be sure to share our website with all your friends who you know would be interested, and especially your friends who aren’t interested yet.  Lastly, you can donate to SA Science to help us create programming and content that will allow us to inform, engage, and excite our community about the science going on in our own backyard.

 

 

Travis Block
A native of San Antonio, Travis works as a post-doctoral fellow at the UT Health Science Center. Additionally, Travis serves as President of San Antonio Science, Inc., a non-profit organization he co-founded to improve awareness of and understanding of science in San Antonio.