Jeronimo Cortina is an award winning Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science and the Associate Director of the Center for Mexican American Studies at the University of Houston. He earned a PhD in Political Science from Columbia University where he previously earned a Master's degree in public Administration and Public Policy from the School of International and Public Affairs. Dr. Cortina specializes on survey research, Latino Politics, immigration, development and quantitative methods. His work has been published in scholarly and policy journals such as Policy Studies Journal, Political Research Quarterly, Social Science Quarterly, American Politics Research, Foreign Affairs in Spanish, and the Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy. His latest books include (with Andrew Gelman, David Park, Boris Shor) “Red State, Blue State, Rich State, Poor State: Why Americans Vote the Way They Do” published by Princeton University Press, “A Quantitative Tour of the Social Sciences” published by Cambridge University Press (with Andrew Gelman) and “New Perspectives on International Migration and Development” (with Enrique Ochoa-Reza) published by Columbia University Press.
Vallabh Das is Benedict-Pitts Professor and Chair of the Department of Vision Sciences in the College of Optometry. He received his undergraduate degree from the Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani, India in 1992 majoring in Electronics Engineering. He then moved to the United States for graduate studies and completed a MS and PhD degree in 1998 in Biomedical Engineering from Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio. He did post-doctoral work at Emory University 1999 to 2002 and also earned his first faculty position at that institution. Dr. Das joined the faculty of the College of Optometry, University of Houston in 2009. The goal of the research in Dr. Das’ laboratory is to understand the disruption of neural circuits in strabismus, a common condition affecting up to 4% of all children. A better understanding of neural mechanisms that are affected in the different forms of strabismus will help develop rationally based therapy. He has maintained continuous funding from the National Eye Institute of the National Institutes of Health since 2004 to support this research. Dr. Das teaches in the professional optometry program and also in the Physiological Optics and Vision Science graduate program in the College of Optometry.