The Dog Zombie (a blogger I regularly follow and is often seen on ASR) took the time to mention an address made at the 2nd UK Conference of Science Journalists, which began with a call to action:
“I think every writer, every journalist, every scholar, should tell you where he’s coming from before he tells you what he knows.”
She herself took the time to do this on her blog and I think it’s not a bad idea. While the About section on ASR gives you a good overview of my experience and education, perhaps a little more insight into my background will give readers a better hold on my personal biases, and they’ll be able to evaluate my opinions using those tools to judge them for themselves. So here we go!
Culturally, I am an Oregonian. While I was born in Washington and spent a few years in Texas, the majority of my sentient time growing up has been in Central Oregon, and the almost all of my education has been provided for me in this state. I was raised within the Lutheran church, and consider myself a spiritual individual though I keep that part of my life fairly private. Socially, I’m an extrovert who believes that maturity is simply knowing when and where to be immature. Politically, I tend to be liberal on most social issues, but conservative when discussing economics and constitutional rights. Musically, I’m a long time musician who’s willing to listen to anything once, but I lack the energy or motivation to keep up with popular music of my own time. My favorite songs or pieces are usually from movie or video game scores, and I enjoy jazz and classic rock. Intellectually, I consider myself a scientist not only from my education but my need to question statements posed as fact, reluctance to describe in absolutes, and desire to evaluate evidence. I pride myself on being able to prove my own opinions wrong when presented with contradicting evidence. My desire is to someday be “an expert in my field” and make an impact on the world (at least in my field), but I haven’t yet found what that will exactly be. I love learning new things and often try to do too many new or different things, becoming a jack of all trades, when I really need to limit my interests to become a master of one.
My current goals surround gaining admission to veterinary school, however I do not see that as my only option for a career in veterinary medicine. Combined with my love of research and budding interest in microbiology, a pHD in veterinary medicine, microbiology, or public health would also allow me to study animal medicine and make my impact. I believe that scientific communication between the academic pedestal and the public is vital to making the changes to consumer and industry perspectives that will be necessary to continue feeding the world in a way that is ethical, realistic, and sustainable. My hope is that in the future as an “expert” I can continue to find ways to reach out to those not reading journals through extension or my own personal efforts/publications.