Colorado School of Mines
APS Public Engagement Intern
American Physical Society
As I started my time at APS, the world was beginning to navigate through the next steps of a global pandemic, and our country was leaving behind a period of widespread misinformation and mistrust. During a time when the public needs to know which sources they can trust to make decisions that will directly affect their health, the American Physical Society has set out to help combat the spread of scientific misinformation. In an attempt to determine the most effective strategy for the role APS and its members play in this trying time, a trial campaign was developed to train APS members in effective communication skills. The intention was that these members would discuss commonly misinterpreted scientific topics with their friends and neighbors, then report to the APS team about their experiences. Moving forward from this trial and feedback, APS will learn to define what an “effective strategy” means to their organization and members, as well as be better equipped to continue their pursuits of political and social advocacy. This presentation sets out to discuss the methods of engagement and analysis being used by APS for this goal.
My role as a public servant is something I proudly carry into everything I do. From volunteering in my hometown of Battle Ground, WA, to developing a centralized service and philanthropy community on the Colorado School of Mines campus, I am constantly looking for ways to apply my technical knowledge to the world of community engagement. I am currently a Junior in Engineering Physics and Space and Planetary Resources at Mines, and through this opportunity with SPS I hope to further explore how I might apply this passion for community impact to a career in Physics.
When I first arrived on the Mines campus, I found myself most connected to the Physics community, which showed me how my passion for humanity and science could intersect. This community continues to show me the importance of maintaining my sense of wonder and compassion, reminding me of the public good that can be done when we understand that science and engineering are not neutral fields. I have explored these ideas through my involvement in SPS and the Society of Women in Physics, as well as undergraduate research and many other academic and service organizations on campus and in the community. Outside of Physics, I enjoy hiking with my dog, Bailey Grace, serving as a Harvey Scholar, and making music on my own and with the Mines Band.
I plan to pursue a Master’s degree in Material Science and a career in Astrophysics. I know that my future holds a unique goal of bridging science and humanity through interdisciplinary cooperation and community impact, and I am excited to see what this summer has in store.