Question: How did you discover Science Communications as a pathway? Do you work closely with PhD students, or do you work more closely with fully fledged scientists who have worked in their field for a long time?
Great question and thank you for asking about ‘alternative’ science careers first of all.
I didn’t know science communication careers existed until half way through my PhD so about 3.5 years ago. I had to enter a competition during my PhD where I had to summarise 4 years worth of research into a 3 minute talk and make it fun and describe it in a way that everyone could understand. I ended up winning that competition and it made me realise how much I love sharing science and learning about it and telling those science stories in many fun and creative ways.
So I set up my science blog which has now won awards, and I started sharing science on Instagram. From there I discovered that there are people all around the world getting paid to do this, it wasn’t just a fun thing on the side that I had been doing. From then on, I got as much experience as I could and learnt new skills alongside my PhD so I could get the science communication job I now wanted.
In the medical research institute that I work with there are scientists at all stages of their career from undergraduates all the way through to professors. All of them are doing research and I work with all of them to share their latest discoveries with the world either through writing, videos, podcasts, events etc, but I also run training sessions and workshops to help those scientists (at all stages) to improve their communication skills and media skills too.
Is there anything else you want to know about a career in science communication?