My first post about ALDLive17 has GOT to be about my new STEM hero. Aphra Bennet. This bad ass STEM lady is 17 years old, and I’m quite sure she is set to take the STEM world by storm. And soon.
Ada Lovelace Day is a day dedicated to celebrating women in STEM, founded by Suw Charman-Anderson 8 years ago as a blog event telling stories about women in tech. The now international celebration champions women of the past, present, and future, across the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths.
I first got involved with Ada Lovelace Day in 2013 when I took part in a Wikipedia Editathon. I then co-authored a chapter of ‘More Passion for Science’at about Ati Hermelin. This year I attended the Ada Lovelace Day Live event in London, and the entire evening blew me away! I was excited to be invited, and enthralled from start to finish.
Last November I took the leap and moved from a Research Postdoc role to a ‘research support’ Public Involvement and Engagement role. I won’t deny I was nervous about this move
- Had I just wasted 7 years of my working life focussing on research when I wasn’t going to do it any more? (Turns out no)
- Would my skills be transferable (absolutely)
- Was this the ‘right decision’ (yes!)
I was ditching research for good. Famous last words.
I’m bringing back the event that kick-started my love of the knit and purl; Knit a Neuron!!!
I work at the University of Oxford, and part of my role is to run ‘engagement events’. The University as a whole is hosting a Curiosity Carnival on September 16th and 29th to teach the public about our research. I’m a neuroscientist by background, and in my eagerness to take part in the event I suggested they have a ‘Knit a Neuron’ installation. The aim is help kids make neurons, and teach them about brain and health research. Not only was this idea met with enthusiasm, I was asked to organise the whole thing.
This is where you, crafting community, come in.
I’ve re-blogged this article because it is a fantastic response to this other, terrible article published in the Chronicle of Higher Education (http://www.chronicle.com/article/To-My-Student-on-the-Death-/240353).
Students can be annoying, and flaky, and sometimes they’re telling porkies, but 99% of them are working hard 100% of the time, and rely on us for support- scholarly or otherwise. As educators we are here to support their learning, and this means if someone says their grandmother has died, we give them the support they ask for, and don’t mock them on the internet.
It’s entirely possible that I’m just not cool enough to enjoy this “humorous,” “fictional” take on the the phenomena of students manufacturing dead grandmothers during finals week. Maybe it’s because my own grandmother died while I was in college, my grandfather died while I was in grad school, or another grandmother died in while I was in grad school (are you keeping track? That’s two grandmothers). I missed her funeral to go to a postdoc interview, which is what she would have wanted (I got the job). As the child of divorced, remarried parents, I had four grandmothers, so if I was so unlucky as to have more than one die during the course of your class, then, gee, I guess I’d be in a pickle!
But seriously, I do not get the mentality of seeing your students as adversaries. I don’t get the need to dehumanize them with your…
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