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Oregon Museum of Science and Industry

Increasing the visibility and impact of science together

Children looking at science booth
OMSI Fellows bring science to young audiences through fun, interactive activities to raise awareness about science and serve as role models.

Oregon State University and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI), one of the nation's leading science centers, have enjoyed a close partnership since 2016. Joining forces to bring together researchers, educators and the public, OSU and OMSI have helped researchers collaborate more effectively on the broader impacts of their grant proposals.

OMSI hosts its popular Science Communication Fellowship cohort program on OSU’s Corvallis campus every spring. More than 70 students, faculty and staff from across science at OSU have completed the training program, including the Colleges of Science; Engineering; Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Science; Agricultural Sciences; Forestry; and Public Health and Human Sciences.

Our program gets results

An in-depth evaluation of the OMSI Fellowship program revealed that scientists who participate in the program:

  • Believe it was well worth the time and effort that they put in and would recommend it to a colleague, rating the program 9.3 on a scale of 1-10 on average.
  • Report improved pedagogical and communication abilities and skills
  • Participate in an average of seven public events per year
  • 95% of those surveyed reported an improvement in the quality of their public engagement

Start improving your communication skills

The OSU-OMSI Science Communication Fellowship training is open to the entire Oregon State community.

OMSI Science Communication Fellowships

OMSI’s Science Communication Fellowships support and prepare STEM professionals to more effectively communicate with a variety of audiences by participating in a series of interactive training workshops. Fellows join OMSI to raise awareness about their current scientific research while also serving as STEM role models for children and teenagers and building a culture of public engagement among science professionals.

OMSI Fellows are required to:

  • Attend four communication training workshops grounded in research and best practices in informal science education.
  • Collaborate with OMSI to develop a hands-on demonstration that highlights unique elements of the researcher’s work.
  • Participate in ongoing outreach opportunities at the museum and at events around the state

Who should apply?

OMSI Science Communication Fellows are STEM professionals. This includes faculty, graduate students, technicians, or other people who work in science, math, engineering, health, or technology-related positions.

Enhance your next grant proposal by showing broader impacts

Showing the broader Impacts for your National Science Foundation or other proposals can make the difference between getting funded and not getting funded. OMSI's team can provide letters of support, a scope of work, budget and other required documentation to include an OMSI Science Communication Fellow into your next grant proposal.

Need help?

We can help you with innovative ways to collaborate on broader impacts and can even develop a customized plan for you that can enhance your research proposals. Learn how we can help you develop the broader impacts in your application.

Contact OMSI’s Director of Guest Engagement Andrew Haight at ahaight@omsi.edu.

OMSI Fellows Cohorts

Learning to communicate science together

Meet our OMSI Fellows

What to expect

  • Participate in a series of four professional development workshops, which are three to four hours each and spaced over three to four months. The initial three communication workshops will take place on OSU’s Corvallis campus at OSU between January and April. The final workshop will be held at OMSI in Portland in May.
  • Collaborate with museum educators to develop a unique, hands-on activity representing your specific work.
  • Participate in at least three public programs a year. Most Fellows participate in Meet a Scientist, a public program held on the second and fourth Saturdays of each month at OMSI. This program reaches about 300 visitors at every event.

A unique partnership

This innovative partnership between OMSI and Oregon State University seeks to:

  • Provide a proven, effective platform and support system for OSU researchers to fulfill broader impact requirements on their grants.
  • Engage the community with OSU research—inspiring children and teenagers’ interest in STEM and raising the public profile of our scientific research.
  • Build science communication skills and a reflective practice around informal science education across the OSU community.
  • Enrich the relationship between OSU and OMSI.

Our partnership with OMSI has made an impact in science across campus and across Oregon. Learn how OMSI and the College of Science are collaborating to train more students and STEM professionals to become effective science communicators.

Learn more about how you can work with OMSI through Science Communication Fellowships or through Broader Impacts. Or stay connected with OMSI’s Science Communications services and join their email list to learn about upcoming opportunities.

2020 Workshop Dates

All workshops held at OSU unless otherwise indicated.

Workshop 1: Thursday, January 23
Workshop 2: Thursday, March 5
Workshop 3: Thursday, April 9
Workshop 4: Saturday, April 25, held at OMSI in Portland

Application deadline: November 4, 2019

Applicants will be notified of acceptance and scholarship status by Thursday, November 14, 2019. The College of Science has a limited number of scholarships available to support its students, faculty and staff.

Questions? Contact Andrew Haight, OMSI’s Director of Guest Engagement, at 503-797-4669 or ahaight@omsi.edu.