As part of my PhD I am part-funded by the Science Museum. In 2021, I had the opportunity to undertake a placement at the Science Museum in London, where I primarily worked on the Science Museum’s Space Lates and on a research package for a 2024 exhibition.
For Space Lates, I organised Q&As with Melissa Thorpe, CEO of Spaceport Cornwall, and with human spaceflight expert Libby Jackson. In addition, drawing on my PhD research, I researched the history of imaging (and imagining) Mars for an upcoming exhibition. Watch this space!
Outreach under lockdown
As the pandemic has dragged on, I’ve turned to doing more public engagement. Combining my love of public engagement with my love of Twitter, I hosted People of Space twice and would love to do it again. I also hosted Tweeting Historians in March 2021.
I am a very big fan of the work CoderDojo does – they run free code clubs all over the world. I used to volunteer at the Manchester CoderDojo with Robogals Manchester. I also took part in CoderDojo’s first ever content hackathon translating material and would like to keep contributing in future hackathons.
From 2015 to 2018 I volunteered with UoM Physics Outreach doing science busking, which is standing around in public explaining physics with the aid of cool toys.
From 2015 to 2016 I was the Marketing Manager for Robogals Manchester, an organisation which teaches young people to code and has a particular focus on getting girls enthused about STEM. Robogals itself has chapters worldwide, so if you’re a university student and interested in STEM or science communication I would strongly encourage you to volunteer.
As part of this, for Ada Lovelace Day 2015 I was interviewed for the CS@Manchester podcast about our work.
I occasionally speak about being a woman in physics and did this for the Science and Engineering Hub at the University of Manchester: You don’t have to be Wonder Woman to be a Woman of Wonder
I still stand around in public explaining cool science things. During my MSc, I trained as a science busker and helped out with history of science displays, so I programmed computers older than I am!