What an amazing experience this has been! To be chosen as the winner of the Genes Zone has been the perfect end to the most exciting two weeks! I would like to take this opportunity to thank those who have played a role.
First, thank you to all of the students in the Genes Zones, who play the most important role in this event. Thanks to all of the hilarious moderators and organisers at I’m a Scientist Ireland who ran everything like a well-oiled machine and who are clearly the pros at science outreach. I would also like to thank the Wellcome Trust and Science Foundation Ireland for funding this amazing event. Thank you to the teachers in each of the Genes Zone schools. I’m sure you had no easy task in arranging live chats and encouraging participation in your schools. Each of your roles in the I’m a Scientist project have made sure that the event was as exciting and engaging as possible.
I would like to thank all of the scientists of the Genes Zone. I have learned so much about each of your work from your interactions with the students. Your answers kept me interested and your jokes kept me laughing. Congratulations to everyone for having, what I hope has been, a big impact on the bright minds of the future. It has been incredible to go through this I’m a Scientist journey with you and I will definitely be keeping an eye on all of your research in the future, good luck!
I would also like to thank my PhD supervisors in Trinity College Dublin, Dr Lorna Lopez and Prof Louise Gallagher, for their support in this project and for instilling in me the value of science communication and outreach. I am so lucky to be surrounded by role models in STEM engagement every single day!
I am certain that over the past two weeks I have spoken to the scientists of the next generation. Each student and each school brought something so different to the event. I am grateful to every single one of you for the part you played. From the in depth and insightful questions at St Andrews College, to the students of Abbey Community College and Heywood Community School who had me laughing out loud at my desk during our live chats, to the speed-typers at Scoil Chaitríona who definitely boosted my words-per-minute rate forever more, thank you so much. The questions you have asked me have changed my view of my own research and have inspired me to think about problems from a different angle. You all have bright futures ahead I am sure.
As a PhD student, I am so grateful for the opportunity to take part. The event has shown me the importance of engaging the public with my research and the hunger that is out there to learn more. Science is for everybody and everyone deserves a chance to sink his or her teeth into it. This is something I will carry with me for the rest of my career. I would like to take this opportunity to encourage everyone to take part in I’m a Scientist – students, teachers, scientists! This has been a truly rewarding experience and one that I will not forget!
Scientists! If you’d like the chance to win funding for your own public engagement work, apply for the next I’m a Scientist, Get me out of here: imascientist.ie/scientist-apply