My philosophy has always been that science can’t function in its own bubble. In order for our work to have the most impact, and to better the world in general, scientists have the responsibility to integrate community service and education in everything that they do.
For the most up-to-date information on my outreach activities, see my CV.
“Noise in Nature” and Careers in STEM – School Presentations
I currently visit classrooms in Springfield public middle schools to talk to the children about wildlife, urban ecology research, bioacoustic research, and careers in STEM. I have visited Up Academy Kennedy Middle school for the past two years, and STEM Academy Middle School the year before.
In Florida, I presented a pilot workshop for elementary and middle school children called: “Noise in Nature”. The first workshop was presented this summer at the Florida Museum of Natural History – “Bird Brained” science summer camp. The camp was open to children in Gainesville, Florida and throughout North-Central Florida. It focused on hands-on activities to show how human noise can disrupt animals in their habitat, and also how animals communicate. In addition, I demonstrated the equipment and techniques that acoustic biologists use to study animal communication. I developed materials for the children to make their own “observations” as I played videos of animals communicating, connecting them in a real way to science It was a big hit! Since then, I have presented this workshop at YOPP after-school program in Gainesville, FL, and at Up Academy Kennedy Middle School for Grade 7 students in Springfield, MA.
OEB Science Cafe
Science Cafe is a monthly science forum where UMass OEB graduate students invite a scientist to talk to members of the public about their research in a less formal setting. I am the main videographer of the event, and I worked with Amherst Media Organization to receive formal training in videography. The film is then edited and hosted on the local Public Access Channel in Amherst, as well as the Science Cafe YouTube page to spread our reach even further.
That’s Life [Science] Blog
A life science outreach blog by an interdisciplinary group of University of Massachusetts students. I am the communications committee chairperson, social media staffer, peer editor, and staff writer contributor.
Urban Ecology: Nature In and Of the City
Seminar, Applewood Retirement Home, Amherst, MA (Oct. 2016).
Birds and Wildlife Biology
STEM Middle Academy, Springfield, MA. Bird life cycle presentation, careers in wildlife biology, nest box building, and nature walk (Apr 2016).
Science Fair Judge
I began judging middle school science fairs this year (2013), and it was an amazing experience! I couldn’t believe the enthusiasm and sophistication that children of all ages had during the course of the fair. I will certainly be volunteering for science fairs again next year.
SNRE Graduate Student Council President
I am proud to say that I was elected President of the SNRE GSC in March 2014. I am looking forward to increasing the wealth of professional development, community service and social activities that the GSC has to offer, and to increase involvement of graduate students in these enriching activities.
As a member of the SNRE GSC, I have taken on a couple project to benefit the program and the community. We are responsible for assessing and awarding travel grants to SNRE graduate students. I will also be organizing a 5K run in February to benefit the organization. Finally, I organized a blanket and coat drive for the homeless of Gainesville.
Florida Museum of Natural History – Butterfly-fest 2013
Butterfly fest is a popular and exciting festival every fall at UF’s FMNH. I was happy to volunteer in the “Discovery Room”, and loved watching the children learn about biology through hands-on and interactive exhibits.
Career Day – What is a Wildlife Biologist? Farmington Middle School
A fun presentation along with some animal bones for the kids to pass around. I show them what it’s like to be in the field of ecology.
Camp Becket-Chimney Corners YMCA Travel and Service Program
I led a month long bicycling, camping and community service trip through VT and NY. We had a group of about 13 teenaged participants, and it was a life-changing experience!
Ecohusky Student Group
As group treasurer, I organized the annual Ecohusky 5K race, along with several other initiatives and events to spread awareness of environmental issues on the UConn campus and throughout the Mansfield community.