J. Luton

Beginning a new adventure

In Uncategorized on August 15, 2013 at 5:58 pm

It’s August 15th, which means I’ve been at my new job for two weeks now.  What, you ask, am I doing with my life now that I’ve procured a Master’s?  Well, quite frankly, I’m lucky to have found a job that pays me to use that degree.  Each work day, I overlook the beautiful landscape of North Campus at UGA from my office in Old College and I write about research–science and social science–as a writer and multimedia producer for the Franklin College of Arts and Science.  It’s actually quite perfect. It’s a great blend of science and social science, clearly something that’s grounded in my own education.

So far, I’ve spent a lot of time reading and researching departments and institutes and centers contained within the Franklin “family.” And I wrote this piece about a NASA internship program.  Yesterday, I attended a conference over on South Campus and I’m working on a piece about that whole experience and the value of interdisciplinary research and conferences.  I’m also finishing up a piece on a Franklin alumnus who was awarded a prestigious book award.  Moving forward, I look forward to sharing more of my blog posts for the Franklin Chronicles, as well as thoughts on my experience, the people I’ve met and what it’s like to delve into the world of science writing from a novice science perspective.

Disclaimer: All views are my own and do not necessarily represent the views of my employer, etc. Yada, yada, yada.  Insert boilerplate statement here.


Big Data and Health?

In Uncategorized on May 9, 2012 at 6:58 pm

This semester I had an opportunity to learn about the future of Big Data and health.  And we even designed this lovely magazine for our class.  This past weekend, we had an opportunity to share our big ideas with the companies we had been working with.  Check out our ideas! It was a great learning experience!

It’s obvious, right?

In Uncategorized on May 9, 2012 at 6:51 pm

Have you seen the cover of Newsweek this week?  If you haven’t, it’s worth taking a look.  The magazine features a bubbly infant holding a giant box of french fries with a headline reading: “When I grow up, I’m going to weigh 300 pounds.”  It made me have that sick to my stomach feeling when I saw it for the first time.

And I guess that’s the point.  But a lot of people have writing and speaking and talking about our obesity rates for a long time and still our problems persist.  Personally, I think it comes down to a couple of a things to turn this obesity problem around–restructuring our food system so we’re not a commodity consuming nation and redesigning our communities and neighborhoods to be more mobile.  I know, I know.  Really, there has to be more to it than that.

But from everything I’ve read and learned about this year as an HMJ student, these two things could stand to make a big difference.  I’ve also been thinking a lot about Dr. Otis Brawley’s speech at AHCJ and his common sense approach to health.  It was inspiring.  And I hope that people will continue to speak out in a candid way about the US’s inability to take preventative health measures to help improve our healthcare system. 

Why is this so important?  Well, if we spend the money on preventative healthcare before a real problem arises, we end up spending less money on chronic health conditions like obesity.  I think, as Americans, we’ve known this for a long time.  But our culture perpetuates our decisions to eat that cheeseburger now and deal with the consequences later.  It’s time to step up to the plate and accept that it’s better to prevent disaster than to try and deal with it after it’s already happened.

%d bloggers like this: