The American College of Epidemiology is an organization that serves a number of functions for epidemiologists, one of which is providing Associate Members opportunities to be involved in the College through leadership and service. Dr. Bertha Hidalgo
, currently an Associate Member, has participated in a variety of positions throughout the College during her 4 years of membership. Motivated by her connections with other members of the College, including Dr. Jan Eberth, Dr. Alberto Caban-Martinez and Dr. Joe Holbrook, she has served as the Chair of the Associate Member committee, as an ACE Board Member and currently serves as the vice-chair of the Minority Affairs committee. She was inspired to take on many of these leadership roles, she said, “because I saw the potential for growing the junior membership in the College.” Dr. Hidalgo explained, “junior members often have more time and have the energy to engage in activities that are important for the continued growth and longevity of organizations like ACE.”
Dr. Hidalgo obtained a Bachelor’s of Arts from Stanford University in Human Biology, a Master’s of Public Health in Biostatistics/Epidemiology from the University of Southern California and a PhD from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Her dissertation focused on the human papillomavirus and cervical intraepithelial neoplasia within foreign-born Latina women. Upon graduation, Dr. Hidalgo began a post-doctoral fellowship to obtain new skills that she did not get in her PhD program. “I trained as an applied epidemiologist, but decided to take a position on a T32 training program in Statistical Genetics at UAB. I am mainly training in epigenetics, with a focus on understanding epigenetic differences between different sub-groups of Latinos.”
Like her predecessors, Dr. Hidalgo has inspired many other Associate Members to get more involved in the College through committee membership and leadership positions within the Associate Member committee. And when asked about her advice to new Associate Members joining the college, she said, “get involved! Join the bi-monthly ACE Associate Member calls. Look at the ACE website and see what other committees match your interest and get involved in those as well. You don't have to immediately take on responsibilities, but it's good to become exposed to the happenings of the College and the committees and also get to know people as well.”
Dr. Hidalgo can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.