The 2018 Junior Technical Meeting (JTM) and the Puerto Rico Interdisciplinary Scientific Meeting (PRISM) will be held at Universidad del Turabo on April 28, 2018.  JTM and PRISM are the island’s largest annual scientific forum for undergraduate and graduate STEM students to present their research projects to peers and faculty members.

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Invited Plenary Speakers:

Rafael Irizarry, PhDRafael Irizarry, PhD

Rafael Irizarry received his Bachelor’s in Mathematics in 1993 from the University of Puerto Rico and went on to receive a Ph.D. in Statistics in 1998 from the University of California, Berkeley. His thesis work was on Statistical Models for Music Sound Signals. He joined the faculty of the Department of Biostatistics in the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 1998 and was promoted to Professor in 2007. He is now Professor of Biostatistics and Computational Biology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and a Professor of Biostatistics at Harvard School of Public Health. Since 1999, Rafael Irizarry’s work has focused on Genomics and Computational Biology problems. In particular, he has worked on the analysis and signal processing of microarray, next-generation sequencing, and genomic data. He is currently interested in leveraging his knowledge in translational work, e.g. developing diagnostic tools and discovering biomarkers.

Professor Irizarry also develops open source software implementing his statistical methodology. His software tools are widely used and he is one of the leaders and founders of the Bioconductor Project, an open source and open development software project for the analysis of genomic data. Bioconductor provides one of the most widely used software tools for the analysis of microarray data. 

Jorge Vélez-Juarbe, PhD

Mammalogy Assistant Curator, Jorge Velez-Juarbe, holds a PhD from Howard University, where he studied the morphology, systematics, and paleobiology of fossil sirenians and cetaceans. After receiving his doctorate in 2012, Dr. Velez-Juarbe held Post-Doctoral Associate positions at the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama, and at California State University Fullerton before being hired as Mammalogy Assistant Curator of Marine Mammals at our Museum. Dr. Velez-Juarbe's appointment involves curatorial responsibility for both out fossil and extant marine mammal collections.

Some of his current projects include: diversity and dynamics of ancient marine mammal herbivore communities, marine mammals from Central America and the Caribbean, Evolution of Cenozoic marine faunas of the Eastern Pacific region, Evolution and diversification of early odontocetes and mysticetes, and paleobiogeography of Cenozoic vertebrates from the Caribbean region.



The PRISM provides vertical integration of the educational pipeline by bringing together secondary school students and teachers, undergraduate and graduate students from all STEM disciplines from all major institutions of higher education in Puerto Rico.  Participants are encouraged to cross disciplinary lines by attending presentations and posters from other disciplines.    


07:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Registration & Breakfast

Ignacio Morales Nieva Amphitheatre Lobby


09:00 a.m. – 09:30 a.m.

Welcoming Remarks

Idalides Vergara, Ph.D.
Associate Dean of the School of Engineering 

Darrell Hillman, DMD.
University of Puerto Rico, Acting President

Ilka Ríos, DMD.
University of Puerto Rico, Acting Vice President

Rolando García, Ph.D., P.E.
Universidad del Turabo, Dean of the School of Engineering

 Ana R. Guadalupe, Ph.D.
Resource Center for Sc. & Eng. Acting Director

Eduardo Nicolau, Ph.D.

Carlos R. Cabrera, Ph.D.
American Chemical Society - Puerto Rico Section Chair





Pedro Rosselló-González,



Universidad del Turabo

09:30 a.m. – 09:35 a.m.

Presentation of Plenary

Speaker Dr. Jorge Vélez-Juarbe








Pedro Rosselló-González,



Universidad del Turabo

09:35 a.m. – 10:20 a.m.

Plenary Conference

Jorge Vélez-Juarbe, Ph.D.

Natural History Museum of Los Angeles

10:30 a.m. – 10:35 a.m.

Presentation of Plenary

Speaker Dr. Rafael Irizarry


10:35 a.m. – 11:20 a.m.

Plenary Conference

Rafael Irizarry, Ph.D.

Professor Harvard University


11:30 a.m. – 01:30 p.m.



Ignacio Morales Nieva Amphitheatre Lobby and the Library Hall

08:30 a.m. – 03:00 p.m.

Poster Set Up


Ignacio Morales Nieva Amphitheatre Lobby and the Library Hall

12:00 p.m. – 02:00 p.m.

Concurrent Scientific Sessions


Rooms ECT 2nd floor, AGM 1st floor, EDI 1st floor & 2nd floor, MGM 1st floor & 2nd floor

02:00 p.m. – 02:20 p.m.



02:20 p.m. – 04:00 p.m.

Concurrent Scientific Sessions


Rooms ECT 2nd floor, AGM 1st floor, EDI 1st floor & 2nd floor, MGM 1st floor & 2nd floor

03:00 p.m. – 05:00 p.m.

Poster Session


Lobby Amphitheatre Ignacio Morales Nieva and Hall of the Library

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