Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Mag-biotech ka na!

Many years ago, I was seated at the Havener Auditorium listening to scientists talk about the future of international agricultural research. Given the date of that discussion, it's a question about who's going to continue tilling the land six years from now and beyond.

I have to admit that I surprise myself a lot of times. Barely a year after sitting in that discussion, I found myself talking about being a scientist in my very first career day (either as a speaker or as part of the audience) event for high school students, as part of efforts to encourage students to pursue agriculture as a career choice. Somehow, I've made it a point to grab opportunities that can help encourage kids to give science careers a second look... after all, I'm living my first-grade self's dream career, that of becoming a scientist.

The most recent career day event I got the privilege to be part of was aimed at encouraging students to take up agricultural biotechnology. It was part of the celebration of the National Biotechnology Week in the Philippines.

(Photo grabbed from Aileen's Facebook post)

Since my sprain was still bugging me, I opted to sit down rather than remain standing during my talk. And I just really talked and interacted with the students: No slide decks. No handouts. No lectern. Just plain story-telling. Pretty much, it's like practising what Garr Reynolds was saying about the naked presenter... although I did it unintentionally (or at least not knowing that this was what I was doing until I came across his blog post).

I hope that I have actually encouraged kids to at least consider taking up biotechnology as a career path with my story. After all, they are the future scientists and the future food-producers of the world.