Immigration Narratives: First Impressions

Hello everyone!

During my first week of research, I analyzed the immigration narratives being told by the New York Times. This meant that I classified each immigration-related article as an opinion piece or a news piece, assigned it to one of five broad categories such as “Border Crossing” or “Government Policy,” and wrote down a quick summary of each story. Then, I noted whether the article carried a neutral, encouraging, or discouraging message to potential immigrants from Mexico and Central America. Each article was sourced from the time period between January 2018 and June 2019. 250 articles later, here are some of my main takeaways.

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Post 1

For the beginning of my project, I focused on immersing myself in Irish myth, keeping an eye out for anything that I recognized as familiar to Christianity, using my background knowledge and the knowledge I gained from preliminary readings of a few Bible stories.  I focused first on the Penguin Classics publishing of Early Irish Myths and Sagas.  In this collection was stories such as The Wooing of Etaín, a classic myth, and The Birth of Cú Chulaind, the beginning of one of the more prominent mythic heroes in Irish culture.  Throughout my reading of these myths, I did notice key points that piqued my interest in regard to the connection to Christianity.  For one, there is an odd pattern that had occurred in many of the myths where the people will say “I swear by the god my people swear by.”  I will need to look more into this, but it is my hypothesis that this phrase was a way for the scribes that wrote and edited the oral stories to remove the mentions of the pagan deities while still keeping it separate from Christianity.  This works to create the illusion of monotheism without forcibly converting the myths to swear by God, which would be frowned upon by Christians anyway.

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Post #1: Low Vaccination Rates in the United States and the Outbreaks they Cause

In order to improve vaccination rates and prevent diseases such as measles, it is first necessary to understand why people choose not to get vaccinated. So far, I have spent much of my time reviewing the literature surrounding anti-vaccination. I have also analyzed MMR vaccination data using R to see if there are any links between race, income level, and geographic location in MMR vaccination rates. I have decided to narrow my focus to measles and the MMR vaccine due to the differences in reasons for anti-vaccination in different vaccines.

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Post #1: First Week of Zebrafish Research Complete!

Now that my first week of on-campus research is complete, I have details about my zebrafish research to share and a rough outline of what is next for my investigation of the effect of alcohol on vasculature development.

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