Outreach

It’s important to give back to the next generation.  I also feel like it’s good for the people giving back.  It feels good to teach and share science with other people.  When I was in graduate school, I got the opportunity to design a week long workshop for 8th grade to get a sense of what research was like.  It was one of the most rewarding things I did in my career.  It also taught me that being scientific and curious can be done a young levels.  We could get 8th grades to think like we did in the laboratory, with little direction from  us.  We also lead them to inquire about different questions.

As a postdoc I am thinking of new ways to give back to community.  Recently our lab design and did outreach at a STEM expo.  Community is so important.  Part of that community is giving back, and sharing your knowledge with the next generation.  I that what is known to those we are doing outreach with is the passion we have for our science.  I hope they also know that we care about the community.  Knowledge has to be passed on from one generation to the other.  If the generation before us refused to share their knowledge with us, science would be an endless circle of discovering the same things.  It would be like being lost in the woods and walking around in circles.   The transfer of knowledge and the display of passion and the importance of science to the next generation is critical.  Science is the continuing of passing the torch.  If we don’t take care of each generation and value the members we lose vital relationships, information, and collaborations.  Even if the students we share with don’t become scientist we have more science literacy in society.  We need policy makers, voters and all people to be literate in society.  I don’t see outreach as making the next generation of scientist.  I see it as increasing science literacy.

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