Preparing students for effective science communication
The Science Influencers program provides Research and Extension Experiences for Undergraduates (REEU), combined with education and science communication skills to help students become effective, influential communicators of science in the public domain. This USDA-funded program is driven by a need to repair the leaky pipeline in science communications, especially in food, agriculture, natural resources, and human (FAHN) sciences.
Science Influencers helps the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture achieve its goal of supporting research, education, and extension activities for undergraduates. USDA-NIFA provides leadership and funding for programs like Science Influencers, which advance agriculture-related sciences. Undergraduate students interested in boosting their communications skills in agriculture and science can apply by clicking the below.
How Science Influencers Works
The Science Influencers program is a yearlong integrated experience where undergraduate students learn to communicate effectively about science, technology, engineering, and math — a skillset that is critically needed in food, agriculture, natural resources, and human sciences, or FANH. Participants will gain science knowledge and professional communications experience including:
- a science communications course.
- basic, applied, and social/behavioral science mentors.
- ongoing activities to develop technical and leadership skills like critical thinking and problem-solving.
- paid summer internships including scientific and technical communications training and social media experiences.
- a spring retreat and fall communications symposium.
- one elective outreach experience (research or study abroad, for example).
This work is supported by the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative’s Research and Extension Experiences for Undergraduates program area, grant no. 2021-68018-34633/project accession no. 1026051, from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture.