Meet new member Daniel Bastardo Blanco

Daniel Bastardo Blanco, a global liaison specialist at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and a new addition to the NASW community, shares #WhySciWri in this short Q&A.

A headshot of Daniel Bastardo Blanco

Daniel Bastardo Blanco

Q: Tell us a little about yourself.

I'm originally from Venezuela. Last year, I completed my Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences focused on the study of unconventional T cell development, which are specialized cells of the immune system. After completing my studies, I joined the Medical Content Outreach team of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital as a global liaison specialist. In my role, I work with both internal and external teams in developing and distributing health education for families facing childhood cancer around the world. I also contribute to many other facets of the team, including internal patient education and research communication.

Q: How did you get interested in science writing?

A: I have always been passionate about bridging the gap between scientists and the general public. In 2019, I was a AAAS Mass Media Science Fellow at Discover Magazine, where I wrote stories on a variety of topics, from probiotics to climate change and non-coding DNA. The fellowship helped me cultivate my writing and launch a career as a professional science communicator.

Q: What do you love most about your job?

A: What I love most about my job is that I get to work with individuals from all over the world—with different cultural and professional backgrounds— in dynamic projects that have an impact on people's lives.

Q: What's the website you visit most often for work?

One of my team's products is the Together website, a free online resource for families facing childhood cancer regardless of where the patient is receiving treatment. The site is now available in eight languages, and I spend a lot of time every week talking about it with healthcare providers, families, and other stakeholders, searching for opportunities to improve and expand our content offerings. You can visit Together at

Q: If you could write about any scientific event/breakthrough/topic (past, present or future) what would it be and why?

A: I would be writing about COVID-19. As a trained immunologist with a life-long interest in viruses, I find the topics surrounding COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, and the development of vaccines extremely fascinating.

Q: Why did you join NASW, and what kinds of professional connections/opportunities are you seeking?

A: I attended ScienceWriters2020 and fell in love with the amazing community of science writers that makes up NASW. The conference was the most engaging, inspiring, and didactic professional meeting that I have attended, and I cannot wait to continue to learn, grow, and network as a member of NASW.

Photo by National Cancer Institute on Unsplash

January 19, 2021

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