Science is for everyone: Ten years of NSERC PromoScience projects with Royal Roads University and partners

February 20, 2020
Young girl points to the PromoScience Expedition banner on a docked boat

A photography exhibit spanning ten years of RRU NSERC PromoScience projects shows the art and science of connecting communities with science experiences, participation and career pathways.

Presented by marine geologist Audrey Dallimore and photographer Dan Anthon, the exhibit explores how science and technology not only serve coastal communities, but provide career options for everyone, including youth, girls and women, and Indigenous people.

Since 2010, Royal Roads’ PromoScience expeditions have connected coastal communities with scientists, marine technicians and mariners of the Canadian Coast Guard for hands-on learning experiences along BC’s South Coast and the Beaufort Sea.

Dallimore and Anthon illustrate clam garden restoration and research led by WSÁNEĆ and Hul’q’umi’num Treaty Group Nations along with Parks Canada at Fulford Harbour, floating science outreach expeditions aboard the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Vector on the West Coast, and Science Day in Tuktoyaktuk, among other projects.

NSERC PromoScience projects are designed to promote an interest in natural sciences and engineering, including mathematics and technology (STEM), to young Canadian students, their teachers and their communities. In particular, the projects funded by NSERC PromoScience encourage the participation of the under-represented groups in STEM, who are girls, women and Indigenous people.

The projects are about creating connections and experiences in coastal communities so that people, particularly youth, start seeing themselves in science and technology careers, says Dallimore.

 “Many of us who work in science can think back to our early mentors or a trip to a science centre which led us to think that science was something we could be involved in. That’s what PromoScience is all about – helping to create those opportunities in coastal communities.”

The exhibit documents projects with partners from Geological Survey of Canada-Pacific of Natural Resources Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Canadian Hydrographic Service and the Canadian Coast Guard, Parks Canada at Gulf Islands National Park Reserve, local and regional school boards, Clayoquot Biosphere Trust, Ucluelet Aquarium, Port Alberni Friendship Center, the Hamlet of Tuktoyaktuk, Aurora College in Inuvik, Inuvialuit Regional Corporation, and Polar Knowledge Canada.

The exhibit is free and open to the public. It runs Tuesday, Mar. 3 to Friday, April 17 in the Library Showcase at Royal Roads University.