March Mammal Madness!!
In honor of (but in no way affiliated with) the NCAA Men's College Basketball March Madness tournament, March Mammal Madness is an annual tournament of simulated combat competition among mammals. First organized in 2013 by Katie Hinde at Arizona State University, MMM is now a full on mammalian-science-education-awesomeness-producing machine co-run by Joshua Drew at Columbia University and Chris Anderson at Dominican University.
I joined the MMM team for #2017MMM as a battle narrator. Along with some other stellar scientists, I helped research scientific literature and composed battles between two mammalian species. As a group, MMM educated participants through social media (live battles on Twitter, recaps on Facebook) about inter-species interactions, the importance of ecological context, how natural selection has shaped adaptations, and conservation management of endangered species.
Be sure to follow along during next years competition!! #2022MMM
Here is some awesome coverage of what the tournament is all about:
- Article discussing the power of performance science by Drs. Hinde, Anderson and Drew
- Coverage by NPR Morning Edition in March 2017!!
- Article by Oxford University Press about the educational benefits of #2018MMM
- Lib Guide created by ASU Libraries that explains the nuts and bolts of the tournament
Think Globally, Learn Locally (TGLL): Funded by the National Science Foundation, this science education program at the University of Utah paired graduate students in the sciences with teachers in the public school system of Salt Lake City, UT. As a TGLL fellow, I wrote and led inquiry-based lessons for middle school science classes and led multiple field trips. It was an incredibly gratifying experience to help children learn. Through TGLL, I also become involved with other outreach activities in Utah:
I have judged science fair projects at the school, district and state levels with the Salt Lake Valley Science and Engineering Fair, from 6th graders to seniors in high school. I also organized a 6th grade science fair, pictured to the right.
I assisted Johanna Varner with her Pika Watch project in the Wasatch mountains. We led a field trip in fall 2012 for multiple classes of 7th graders, pictured to the right. To learn more about Pika Watch, visit her website.
FIRST Lego League
For five years, I volunteered for FIRST Lego League competitions in Utah. These events are for students ages 9-14 centered around a LEGO robotics program as a way to excite kids about science, engineering, and business-related fields. From adrenaline-pumping robotic competitions to teamwork-based challenges, these events are fun and truly inspiring for everyone. I highly suggest you find FLL in your town and volunteer!
Girls Ultimate Frisbee
Ultimate frisbee has been an important part of my life since I was 18 years old. After playing on college and travel club teams, I brought my experience and love for the sport to high schools. For three years, I served as Utah's Girls State Outreach Coordinator through the USA Ultimate organization. With Utah Ultimate Disc Association, I helped develop a girls high school program in Utah. Our first State Championship event in 2014 was covered by local news!