Having participated in I’m an Engineer a couple of years ago, I had a fantastic experience chatting to students about engineering. So when I was approached to participate in I’m a Researcher, Get Me Out of Here! for Curiosity Carnival, I didn’t hesitate at all to reply “Yes!”.
The live chats really are a great platform for students across various subjects and personality types to fearlessly ask questions that they may hesitate to ask in person. Combined with the enthusiastic and efficient moderators, the live chats were a frenzy of interesting questions (thank you, students!)
What I did not expect was how much I’d learn from the other researchers, whose expertise was way out of my area of knowledge! From neuroscience, to philosophy, to anthropology and psychology, I was blown away by the level of expertise, enthusiasm and concise communication that the other researchers brought to the event.
The Live final was pretty nerve-wracking, I must admit – I was very nervous at the beginning. But the audience’s appreciation and interest in our subjects, their insightful questions and the other researchers’ friendly and relaxed demeanour quickly helped me to get into the “zone”.
The Live final was like nothing I’d ever done before, and I’m so glad I got the opportunity to participate and donate the winnings to the charity of my choice (Women’s Engineering Society). It actually made me more enthusiastic about my own research (pretty convenient for writing my current grant proposal) and STEM outreach, having seen the demand and appreciation for it.
Thank you to the European Commission for funding the European Researchers’ Night and I’m a Researcher.
Hope to see and participate in more of these types of events in the future.