The STEM Ambassador Program (STEMAP) is a research and public engagement program funded by the National Science Foundation (Award # 1514494). STEMAP provides training to scientists to bridge science and society through synergistic public engagement activities.
Scientists participating in STEMAP (i.e., “STEM Ambassadors”) reflect on their unique identities (e.g., research interests, hobbies, personal characteristics) and locate community groups outside academia that their identities may resonate with. STEM Ambassadors receive training to approach and engage with the community in that group’s venue. This approach forges innovative and authentic bridges between science and society by creating opportunities for open-ended exchange.
Past STEMAP engagement activities have included:
- A microbiologist with an interest in fermentation cooking (e.g., making kombucha, sauerkraut) partnered with a local cooking school. The scientist shared the science behind fermentation cooking during a cooking class and learned new recipes from the chef leading the class.
- A mathematician who enjoys outdoor recreation partnered with Splore, an outdoor recreation organization. The mathematician discussed the math behind rock climbing equipment on a Splore climbing trip and learned new climbing techniques.
- A hydrogeologist who studies local water resources shared his work before a community council where he learned about water management policies and public concerns.
Visit the STEM Ambassador Program website for more information: www.stemap.org
Follow STEMAP on Twitter @stemapteam