In South Africa, radio is
the primary source of news and information, more popular than TV or
newspapers. However, stories about science, engineering, and technology
have only a faint presence on South African airwaves.
That's why AAAS has joined with the South African Department of Science
and Technology (DST) to offer training and support for professionals
who are planning careers in science journalism or science broadcasting.
As participants in the DST-AAAS Science Radio Journalism Fellowship,
South African scientists and journalists spend one month in residence
with the AAAS radio program, Science Update. During that
time, the Fellows learn the basics of radio journalism, meet with
reporters and editors, and produce original science stories with assistance
from the Science Update staff. The training is designed to
give them the skills to continue writing and producing upon their
return to South Africa. The project will support a total of 15 Fellows
over three years.
Your Genes, Your Choices
for a lay audience, Your
Genes, Your Choices, provides accurate information about
the Human Genome Project and genetic research in an easy-to-read
and understand style and format. Each chapter in the book begins
with a brief vignette, which introduces an issue within a human
story, and raises a question for the reader to think about as the
basic science and information are presented in the rest of the chapter.
Now in its second edition, Your Genes, Your Choices has
been widely disseminated in print and online. It has also been translated
into several other languages, including Spanish and Icelandic.
Media Science and Engineering Fellows Program
Another exciting year is ending for the Mass Media Science and Engineering
Fellows Program. This year 23 Fellows were placed at mass media
organizations throughout the country for summer and fall fellowships.
Placements included newspaper, magazine, radio and television sites.
The Fellows were outstanding in every respect and represented various
academic disciplines, educational institutions and geographic locations.
traveled to Washington, DC, in early June to take part in a three-day
orientation program. A reception was given in their honor during
the first day of activities and was attended by several sponsors,
host-site mentors, alumni and AAAS staff. They also participated
in several workshops and discussions including “Science Writing,”
“How To Pitch A Story,” and “Interviewing Techniques."
On the last day of orientation, the Fellows toured National Public
Radio (NPR) headquarters and participated in a discussion headed
by Hyman Field, Senior Advisor for Public Understanding of Research
at the National Science Foundation (NSF).
At the conclusion
of the 10-week summer program, the Fellows returned to AAAS to attend
a wrap-up session. Fellows shared their experiences with each other,
site mentors, sponsors and AAAS staff through brief introductions
and poster sessions. To assist the Fellows in future science-writing
and scientific endeavors, the Fellows participated in “Where
Can You Go From Here” and “Alumni Paths and Possibilities”