Liz Granger is a previous winner of the Science Communication Award and has just finished a PhD in cell biology. Here she tells us about her experiences after winning the award and why others should apply.
During my PhD I got involved with lots of different public engagement projects and school outreach activities. Back in 2012 the awards application process worked slightly differently with a nomination system in place. When a colleague, Davina Whitnall, offered to nominate me I was over the moon. It sounds trite, but I genuinely didn’t expect to win and I was just pleased to be nominated. When I found out I’d won I couldn’t believe it.
Doing research was something that I did really enjoy (most of the time) but I realised during my PhD, education and science communication is where my heart lies. I think winning this award has opened a lot of doors for me and in January this year I landed my dream job managing the new UCLan Ri Young Scientist Centre (a lab dedicated to delivering hands on science workshops to young people in the North West).
We all know that awards and recognition aren’t the reasons you get involved in public engagement but it is really nice to have your efforts appreciated. Maybe you know someone who you think deserves to win – why not encourage them to apply? People have a tendency to be modest and sometimes may need a little push. If you’ve been involved in science communication yourself, I would strongly recommend you apply for the award. You’ll have nothing to lose and if you do win, it is an amazing experience.