I find the opportunity to communicate with the community about science to be extremely rewarding! It always reminds me of how cool my job is and how lucky I am to do it! But beyond that, communicating with the community about science is a very real responsibility all scientists must take on if we aim to enhance scientific literacy and trust in our fellow community members.
The field of animal behavior lends itself to engaging community members because behavior is readily observable and accessible. My work has been featured across several platforms targeted to non-scientific audiences, including internationally, on the British Broadcasting Corporation (see below) and Scientific American (https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/not-bad-science/chickadees-sing-different-songs-depending-where-theyre-from/, and locally, in Moonshine Ink (http://www.moonshineink.com/mountain-life/johnny-chickadee-cache) and The Nevada Wildlife Society.
Some of my PhD work was also featured in Science Magazine
Throughout my career, I have had the privilege of working with some incredible organizations to engage community members in science, including Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Nevada Bugs and Butterflies (a local non-profit), the University of Nevada Natural History Museum, Project Solution (an after-school program for underrepresented students), Science Olympiad, and Expanding Your Horizons. I have worked with budding scientists of all ages, from teaching 5th graders about food-storing and cognition through the Sagehen Outdoor Education Program to leading nature walks for older adults with the University of Nevada’s Sanford Center for Aging.
Banding and trapping demonstration with Field Ecology students
Volunteering with Nevada Bugs and Butterflies at the local library