In an effort to highlight the important positive role science plays in society, a team of Texas A&M University graduate students of Aggies in Science, Technology and Engineering Policy (A-STEP) will organize a “March for Science” campus event on Saturday (April 22) from 1-4:15 p.m., joining a larger, national and global movement that same day.
Organizers say the Texas A&M and Bryan-College Station communities are welcome to take part in a day of activities that will allow participants to meet the people behind the science and help them gain a better understanding of the scientific process.
“Irrespective of our differences, there is one thing we can all agree on,” organizer and materials science and engineering graduate student Jaskirat Batra said. “The things we get from science benefit all of us. We need to build everyone’s trust in the scientific process, and for us to do that others need to know us as people who do science and break down any barriers.”
Batra said the larger goal of the local and national march is to defend evidence-based policymaking by defending research against budget cuts, protect researchers from censorship and support government agencies that monitor health, food, water, air and climate.
“We want everyone to think they can become a scientist,” Batra said. “We want to show the diversity in science for this event, whether that’s the places that scientists represent or the fields that they’re researching.”
Biochemistry graduate student Keya Mukherjee added that misunderstandings about science and the science community can be overcome with face-to-face interactions.
“The public often has misconceptions about science because they have limited interactions with scientists and this event is about broadening their understanding of what we do on a day-to-day basis,” Mukherjee said.
Following the solidarity march on Simpson Drill Field from 1-2 p.m., science demonstrations and a “Meet a Scientist” session will take place in the Interdisciplinary Life Sciences Building (ILSB) from 2-4 p.m. There will also be a “Science Town Hall” from 2-4:15 p.m. in the ILSB. All events are open to children.