From a steadily growing interest by the scientific community along with increased demand by educators and policy makers, science communication has become the need of the hour. The American Geophysical Union (AGU) launched the Voices for Science Program to help the geoscience community meet those needs. The program aims to help train scientists from all stages in their careers to be better science communicators and advocates for public engagement.
With two different tracks, communications and policy, the Voices for Science program provides the opportunity to actively participate and explore different facets of science communication. Only 30 individuals were chosen from a pool of 100 candidates to be a part of the inaugural program. Doctoral candidate Sriparna Saha has been selected as a part of the initial cohort for the communications track.
Read about the Voices for Science Program in the following article published in EOS:
The twelfth annual ‘Reach for the Stars Stem Festival‘ , co-sponsored by the Ride Family Foundation and Rice Space Institute, was held at Rice University on Saturday, April 21st. It was a spectacular success. This festival, which targets middle school girls, includes a street fair, an inspiring talk by a woman astronaut, and roughly thirty women-led science and engineering workshops. The plenary talk was given by NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson, who also happens to be a Rice Alum. This event turned out to be another opportunity for the Rice Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences Department to showcase its commitment towards science outreach and education.
The EEPS exhibit table engaged young girls with fun, hands-on activities like the plate tectonics (using Oreo cookies), along with the tried and true rock and mineral identification. Some of the modules presented were developed as a part of the EEPS Reach teaching program, and successfully kickstarted part of the workshop sessions.
It was amazing to see that the young girls were ecstatic to learn about science- and geology in particular- even if some of the girls only cared about eating the Oreo cookie continents. Not just the young girls were engaged. Some of the teachers accompanying the girls actually took notes on the hands-on activities (the Oreo cookie plate tectonic activity was an instant hit with both young and old alike), telling us that they would incorporate them in their classroom teaching. Perhaps this is the beauty of public outreach activities, to be able to connect with people in such a way that they start to care about science.
Graduate students Alana Semple, Juliana Spector, Laura Carter and Sriparna Saha represented the department at this event and mentored two 45-minute workshops focused on the Earth’s Interior (Differentiation and Convection) and the Earth’s Exterior (Wet Texas: from Floodplains to the Coast). Known formerly as the ‘Sally Ride Festival‘, this annual fair brings in hundreds of young girls to the Rice University campus, giving them a glimpse into the world of science in a way that excites them and encourages them to explore the world around them.
Join EEPS and the Wiess School of Natural Sciences for a special seminar and breakfast with Richard Fortey, Ph.D.
Richard Fortey is a paleontologist who studies trilobites and graptolites. Like many geologists, he started collecting fossils at a young age, and then lived the dream of working at the Natural History Museum in London. He is also a well-known author of many popular science books, and has hosted several Sir David Attenborough and BBC Four documentaries on a variety of natural history topics.
Breakfast will be held on the patio at the Keith-Wiess Geological Laboratories at 8:00 am, Thursday February 15, 2018. The Q&A Seminar will be held in ABL 131 until 9:15 am.
Evening of February 15, 2018 (6:30pm) Lecture at the Houston Museum of Natural Science:
Trilobites, the Fossil Record and Evolution- by Richard Fortey, Ph.D.
Visit: http://store.hmns.org/DateSelection.aspx?item=3850 to purchase tickets.
Rice students, faculty and staff receive reduced ticket price of $8 with their Rice ID. Present ID at box office for special discount. (Discount not available online.)