Week Two: What is going on?

Digital Science Communication

June 1st – June 12th
Course description: In this course students learn the skills required for modern, digital scientific communications including video production, public speaking in a virtual environment, creating posters, and writing abstracts. Students will review scientific information presented in professional and popular media and will produce drafts of videos, presentations, abstracts, and posters. In addition to learning effective communication, students will learn to evaluate the quality of science presentations available across various media from popular media (news, magazines, blogs) to professional sources (scientific journals).

June 1st

10:00 AM – 11:00 AM: Program virtual “huddle” with Kendra

Meeting ID: 921 7339 1580 Password: 529212

OPTIONAL: 12:00 PM-1:00 PM : Virtual VSSA – Faculty Seminar

See the calendar of seminars here: https://medschool.vanderbilt.edu/vssa/virtual-vssa-2020/

1:00 PM-3:00 PM: Video Project 1 Brainstorming Session: Using “Mural” (Zoom Link here)

June 2nd

11:00 – 12:00 AM : VU-Mental Health and Persistence Meeting

Watching using Facebook Watch Party

Office of Intramural Training & Education

Navigating new jobs, the career exploration process, and research can seem overwhelming and lead us to doubt ourselves just when we need confidence the most. In this interactive workshop, we will discuss attitudes and behaviors that can get in our way and explore strategies for building resilience and dealing with self-doubt and developing our confidence. The workshop will highlight the emotional intelligence competencies needed for success in research and healthcare careers and will provide insights into approaches for developing these competencies as part of your NIH experience.

For more information go to https://www.training.nih.gov/events/view/_2/2831/Becoming_a_Resilient_Scientist

OPTIONAL: 3:00 – 4:00 PM : SU- Frontiers in Cardiovascular Science Seminar

Description: June 2nd, 2020 – Brian Fritz
Associate Director, Strategic Market Development & Programs, Immunology Segment Manager
10x Genomics


***Mentors assigned to group projects***

June 3rd

OPTIONAL: SU – Simulation of the cardiovascular system and cardiovascular disease

Dr. Alison Marsden – https://profiles.stanford.edu/alison-marsden

OPTIONAL: 12:00 PM- 1:00 PM : Virtual VSSA – MSTP Student Seminar

See the calendar of seminars here: https://medschool.vanderbilt.edu/vssa/virtual-vssa-2020/

1:00 – 3:00 PM: VU: Social Determinants of Health and Health Equity

Meeting ID: 941 0289 0133
Password: 972869

Charlene Walton, M.D.

Director, Collegiate Diversity Partnerships

American Heart Association

Workshop description: My presentation is a case-based “what would you do” discussion focused on the plight of a single female parent who has to make decisions on a daily basis of how to spend her limited funds when “life happens.”  It involves a series of scenarios where participants will need to choose what is important–food, medicine, transportation, rent, education–as they maneuver challenges often faced by those affected by health disparities and inequities.  The exercise is called the “Poverty Simulator” and participants will be put into groups of 3-4 people to discuss and choose what the parent should do and disclose why.

June 4th

OPTIONAL (BUT HIGHLY RECOMMENDED): SU – How to Read and Understand a Scientific Paper

OPTIONAL: 12:00 – 1:00 PM : NU: Cardiology 101

Register in advance for this meeting: https://northwestern.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUvc-qtqj0pHNTMESEy_t6qgzHORd4HSPZw After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

OPTIONAL: 1:00 – 2:00 PM : NU: Medical Student Panel- Pathway to Medicine

Register in advance for this meeting: https://northwestern.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJAkdOCgrzgtGNRh-OIzf3aJLp2ss4QkwsTo After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

June 5th

11:00-12:00 PM : VU: Community Impact/Collective Impact

Meeting ID: 932 2855 1767
Password: 113478

Denise Constanza, AHA Vice President of Health Strategies, Middle Tennessee

Background articles to read on Collective Impact


  1. Using the internet, search for Collective Impacts in your community.  Come to the meeting prepared to present on one local Collective Impact.
    1. Questions to consider: What is the goal of the group?  Who are the main members?  Have they had success?  How often do they meet?  Is there an opportunity for you to join the Collective Impact in the future?
  2. What complex social problem would you solve using a Collective Impact approach?
    1. Questions to consider: Are there any existing Collective Impacts doing similar work anywhere across the nation? Who would you invite to join?  How will you grow community buy-in?  How will you judge success?

OPTIONAL: 12:00 – 1:00 PM – Virtual VSSA – Gap Year

See the calendar of seminars here: https://medschool.vanderbilt.edu/vssa/virtual-vssa-2020/

OPTIONAL: Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine Resident Panel

BLOG POST 1 DUE: Science communication

In this blog post, you can use words, visuals, and add other media elements to explain why science communication is so important particularly in today’s world. The internet and increasingly social media have become the main source of science information for so many Americans. Moreover, there is an increased use of social media by scientists to talk about and read novel science. In a 2015 survey of 3,748 American-based scientists connected with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 47% had used social media to discuss or follow science, and 24% had blogged about science. Today, knowing how to communicate, particularly through digital means, is a critical experience for many aspiring scientists. Any researcher or student with a Facebook page, a Twitter account, or a knack for making videos can become a science communicator. But, what exactly is science communication to you? Why is it so important? 

Published by Kendra Oliver

I am an experienced scientist passionate about science communication, multi-disciplinary projects, and online learning and engagement approaches. It is critical that we find new strategies to communicate scientific finding and engage the public. Using online learning and visualization methods, I am exploring visual science communication to support online education and science marketing approaches. Although classically trained as a research scientist in pharmacology, I consider myself a science communication designer with skills ranging from project management, pedagogical approaches to online learning, video production, instructional design, and web design. With a foundation as a cross-disciplinary team member, I am interested in developing and utilizing these skills to produce science marketing, communication, and engagement strategies, particularly those at the intersection of art and science.

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