September 23, 2015

WANTED: Scientists to write Letters to a Pre-Scientist

Posted by Laura Guertin

We all know how important it is to encourage and mentor the next generation of scientists, to make sure that all students know the numerous opportunities available to anyone with a passion for studying science. But as full-time faculty and research scientists, we are challenged to try to carve out the time to do the outreach we want with K-12 students, to spark that excitement in a student to get them on the pathway of a future in STEM. However, I have recently learned about an opportunity to connect with students – just by contributing four handwritten letters during the school year. The organization that runs this program is called Letters to a Pre-Scientist.

The mission of Letters to a Pre-Scientist is to inspire and empower middle school students from under-resourced communities to pursue careers in science and technology. We do this by helping them form friendships with scientists from around the world. Our program is a cross-curricular experience where students learn science while improving their reading and writing skills and broadening their understanding of world geography and culture. We believe that every student is a pre-scientist, and we aim to give them the tools they need to continue their education.  —  From About us – Letters to a Pre-Scientist

Earlier this week, I received an email that said the organization had over 200 scientists sign up – but they are hoping to impact 400 pre-scientists this year. The Letters to a Pre-Scientist website has all of the information you need to write a successful letter – instructions, writing prompts, and sample letters. If you are unsure that writing a letter can make a difference, I encourage you to read what pre-scientists from previous years have shared about the impact of hearing from a scientist.

Please consider contributing your passion for science with pen and paper this year. Visit the Letters to a Pre-Scientist website, and sign up today! (*if you are reading this post later in the school year, you can still sign up to be on the mailing list and considered for a match next year!)