I am passionate about creating infectious enthusiasm for natural history, animal behaviour, and conservation for the next generation. I like to use arthropods, an often misrepresented and underappreciated group, to engage the public with science.
In 2019, My colleague Morgane Merien and I put together a booth to demonstrate the life of an entomologist, “It’s a Bug’s Lab”, at the Auckland Museum of Transport and Technology’s STEM fair.
During the International Congress of Arachnology, I was interviewed about spiders on The Project NZ.
In 2018, I created, coordinated, and hosted a “Bugs in the Pub” event to engage the public with entomology in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Entomological Society of New Zealand.
I talked about animal weapons (sexually-selected structures used in male-male competition) while Rich Leschen gave a talk on insect diversity and Neil Birrell gave a talk on entomophagy (eating bugs) and the use of insects as helpful composters.
At the University of Florida, I served as the outreach and education coordinator for the Entomology and Nematology department during my two-year MSc degree.
Over this time, I delivered over 80 presentations to public groups spanning preschool and primary schools, secondary schools and college undergraduates, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, State Fairs and Butterfly Festivals, Science Fairs, STEM nights and university football games to fundraisers and retirement homes.
I have taught at educator workshops and teacher trainings, given talks at departmental open houses, judged science fairs, and guided groups at Bioblitz.
I also had the pleasure of directing two years of summer Bug Camp at the University of Florida. Each year we welcomed 35 middle and high school students to spend the week as an entomologist, collecting insects, creating a collection display, conducting experiments, listening to guest speakers, going on field trips and more.