Science communication program recognized
Laurentian University keeps earning accolades.
Its science communication program, which is offered in partnership with Science North, has won the William Edmond Logan Award from the Royal Canadian Institute for Science. The award recognizes excellence in promoting a public understanding of science by a Canadian organization.
“Trends in science research, industry and public policy have prompted a need for trained people in this rapidly growing field,” Chantal Barriault, the program’s director, said in a release. “Laurentian’s graduates are specialists in communicating the work of leading researchers and scientists to diverse audiences, from young children to politicians. We are incredibly honoured to receive this award.”
The science communication program is unique in Canada. It provides graduates with the training to transform scientific information into accessible and understandable knowledge for the public. Many scientists recognize the value of doing outreach, but not all are naturally skilled at it. This program fosters those skills, delivering a multidisciplinary experience that covers the theory underlying good communication, as well as the practical challenges of effectively communicating science and the issues involving science in society.
Graduates of the program are working in various fields across Canada and in other parts of the world, including at Science North, the program’s partner.
“Our core purpose at Science North is to inspire people of all ages to be engaged with the science in the world around them,” Guy Labine, CEO of Science North, said. “It’s communicating science in a way that people can understand and enjoy.
“When the science communication graduate diploma program was launched in partnership with Laurentian University, we saw it as a natural extension of what we do every day at our science centres. This award celebrates a great partnership between two institutions and reinforces the importance of the program and how graduates can have a real impact on our understanding and comprehension of science today.”
According to Reinhart Reithmeier, chair of the Royal Canadian Institute for Science, “these graduates are taking science communication in this country to new heights, helping Canadians of all ages recognize, understand and appreciate science in the world around them. We believe that this is key to fostering a strong science culture in Canada.”
Pierre Zundel, interim president and vice-chancellor of Laurentian University, said the university is proud to be a pioneer in the field.
“This is great news and a wellearned recognition for a very creative and hard-working team,” he said. “I want to recognize the essential contribution of our partner, Science North, in the delivery of the program.”
The program provides students with experiential learning opportunities for research and the application of science communication principles. It proposes a master’s degree or a graduate diploma in science communication. More information on the program and admission requirements are available at laurentian.ca.
A science communication student (2015) from Laurentian University takes part in educational trip to Antarctica.