Back in May several NETCARE personnel at the University of Toronto were forwarded an e-mail from the Toronto Public Library (TPL). The library was interested in finding individuals to give a public talk about science in the Arctic and climate change as part of their Environmental Education program. There was a lot of interest from NETCARE’s end, so Emma Mungall and I ended up volunteering to talk about our research and experiences aboard the Amundsen this summer.
Neither Emma nor I had given a science talk to a public audience before so it was challenging to decide what to discuss. Should we focus only on our work? How much scientific background should give? What level of detail will the audience understand? We gave a practice talk to other NETCARE members and our research groups at U of T and received tremendous feedback. As a result, we re-tweaked our presentation to make it more accessible and to showcase the fascinating research of other scientists on board (in addition to our work).
The talk was at the Kennedy/Eglinton branch on October 21. We had an audience of 25, mostly middle-aged people and senior citizens. Fortunately, there was a great amount of enthusiasm and participation from the audience (see below for shots of Emma and me in action)! People were intrigued by all the research we presented, and captivated by the photos and videos from our time on the Amundsen. Some diligent audience members were even taking notes. It was very interactive and we both enjoyed the opportunity to share our experiences with the community.