Broadening participation in STEM
The geosciences suffer from egregious racial and gender imbalances and deeply-rooted racism embedded in its institutions. Combatting these inequities must be integrated into all facets of academic science. As a grad student, I was deeply involved in CU Boulder's Women in Science and Engineering (WiSE) group, including two years as the group's president. WiSE is a community of graduate students and postdocs that seeks to improve the recruitment, retention, and success of underrepresented scientists in academia and beyond, through monthly seminars, K-12 outreach events, a mentorship program, and our annual Science Communication Symposium.
WiSE leadership retreat, summer 2017
Arctic College students with our hard-earned lake sediment core (obtained in chilly -25ºC conditions!)
Working with students has always been an integral part of my role as a scientist. I've been fortunate work with some great outreach groups, including CU Science Discovery, Earth Explorers, Skype a Scientist, and PROGRESS. We recently partnered with Nunavut Arctic College's Environmental Technology Program to use lake sediment cores to unravel the Holocene environmental history of a site they've been monitoring with students for over a decade.
Communicating research outside of the academic realm and engaging the broader public in geoscience is key to making our work more effective and relevant. My recent communication efforts include visual art, a video project, and science writing through the NPR SciCommers program. Participating in workshops like ComSciCon and the WiSE SciComm Symposium have not only helped me hone my jargon-free communication skills—they've made me a better scientist.
Lab filming for the CU Graduate School, 2016
Photo by Hugo Cordova