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The Next Generation of Science Communicators

The following post was written by Shaun Morris, student intern in the Office of Public Affairs at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center.  Cheers to you, Shaun, and we wish you a bright future and successful career in science communications.

It’s incredible that I’m finishing up my third summer here as an intern. Embarrassingly, I began this science writing internship with only a vague awareness of what a science writer actually is. At the time, science and writing seemed like mutually exclusive fields. But over the past three years, I’ve gained an immense amount of appreciation for the craft.

The importance of scientific research is irrefutable. What’s also undeniable is science’s tendency to be inaccessible. So, we have these monumental scientific and medical breakthroughs, but we lack an audience capable of deciphering these phenomenal, albeit confusing discoveries. If the goal of scientific research is to better the lives of others, what’s the point of research if no one knows about it?

Especially with cancer, science writers are essential to the process because they inform the public about the status of major breakthroughs, allowing patients to make more informed decisions about which type of therapies to begin or which clinical trials to pursue.

I’m incredibly proud that I was able to, in some small way, assist the brilliant Kimmel Cancer Center faculty and staff in communicating how they provide extraordinary care to cancer patients and survivors.

--Shaun Morris
English Studies Student at the University of Maryland, College Park