Posted by: sioglac | Dec 20, 2012

Outreach Update

Education & Outreach is the standard science-world name for “explaining our work to non-scientists.” It can take a seemingly infinite number of forms: writing editorials in newspapers, blogging, hosting events, giving presentations at schools, etc. Some scientists loathe outreach, some love it. I’m happily in the latter category (could you tell??). Why am I randomly bringing up outreach?

  1. I totally forget to post that on Monday, I headed back to Ocean Beach Elementary to talk subglacial lakes with a roomful of 4th graders. I’ve visited them twice in the past, once in November 2011 before last year’s trip to Antarctica and once in March 2012 after the trip. I walked into the classroom, where a handful of students greeted me with a wave and a “Hi Matt!!” I was quite taken aback that they actually remembered who I am. Very cool.I focused this trip mostly on the various drilling projects underway this year. I tossed up a map of where the three field locations are and asked them why we need three projects to look at the “same thing.” First answer: because you want to see if they’re different! Bingo. These kids constantly impress me. Both with answers like that, but also with their questions. Every time I see them, I make my presentation shorter and shorter because they can pepper me with interesting, thoughtful questions for hours.

    As I tweeted, I’m convinced no group asks more questions than a room full of 4th graders.

  2. WordPress a great blog host. They give you all kinds of fun statistics about the blog, like how someone recently found it by google searching “set up nordic track.” I consider that a major outreach success. I was checking over the stats page earlier and saw the following image of locations from where folks have accessed my blog since 25 February 2012:
    Map of where our readers are

    Map of where our readers are

    Whoa. I was stunned when I saw that. In the past 10 months, someone from every continent (though Antarctica isn’t included, I think it’s safe to say someone has read from there :)) has read this blog. Not only that, but I have almost every country in 3 continents covered (N. American, S. America, and Europe). My biggest disappointment: no one from Greenland has read! Hey Summit Bloggers, come read about the other end of the world!!

    But in all seriousness, thank you so much for reading from every corner of the world. It’s really humbling.

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