Outreach is extremely important to me. As a non-traditional student, I felt early on that I had a responsibility to reach out to others that might see themselves in my story and show them that setbacks early in life do not have to define or limit what you can achieve. Having started my journey in higher education as a high school drop out and a parent, I have given several public talks and small media appearances discussing this (some included below), as well as working to communicate science to a broader audience. These larger format talks are an excellent way to get a message out to a lot of people at once, but my primary outreach work has been working one-on-one with at-risk youth in my community. I have partnered with the Linn County Juvenile Detention Center, the Benton County Juvenile Department, Jackson Street Youth Services, and most recently with College Hill Alternative High School, to connect with underrepresented and at-risk youth, helping to foster an interest in biology, and to provide a positive example of a possible future that otherwise would seem out of their reach.
PhD Defense Talk
The public portion of my PhD dissertation defense. I present the research I did throughout my graduate work.
IB Enlightening Talk
I gave a brief talk highlighting some of my research on the thermal biology of garter snakes.
Geeking Out About it: Avatar
I was a guest biology expert asked to discuss the biology of the Avatar movies
I spoke about my unusual journey to grad school and my recipe for success.
Inspiration Dissemination: Just Keep Slithering
I was interviewed with my Mason lab mates on the KBVR radio program. We discussed our paths to grad school, our experiences and our research.