University of Calgary

Chemistry PhD candidate lands fellowship on CBC Radio’s The Homestretch

UToday HomeJune 17, 2013

By Marie-Helene Thibeault

Nicole McNeil, a PhD candidate in Chemistry, will be working for CBC Radio’s The Homestretch show as part of a unique fellowshipNicole McNeil, a PhD candidate in Chemistry, will be working for CBC Radio’s The Homestretch show as part of a unique fellowship. Photo courtesy Nicole McNeilNicole McNeil isn’t your typical chemistry PhD candidate. This summer, unlike her peers, she’ll be trading her lab coat for a microphone as she takes part in a unique media fellowship with Calgary’s CBC The Homestretch radio show.

“I like to talk about science,” says McNeil, who is in the third year of her PhD, studying organic synthesis with a focus in catalysis and drug design. “Communicating about science is something I enjoy. I’m particularly committed to enhancing public understanding of science and conveying the benefits of research and discovery to society,” she adds.

Funded through Alberta Innovates-Health Solutions, the media fellowship program is intended for students with strong biomedical science backgrounds from an institution in Alberta.

As part of the 12-week program, McNeil will work as a reporter, researcher and productions assistant.

“From a scientist’s perspective, I know what questions I would ask when covering a story,” explains McNeil. “As a journalist, I feel like I’ll use a similar approach but with added intention to help the public understand the issue at hand.”

Each year, a single candidate is selected to work in Calgary and one in Edmonton.

“Overall, this will be a great opportunity for me to see the different professional paths I can take my degree as opposed to following a traditional route,” says McNeil.

 

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