Soapbox Science Sydney is an annual free, interactive, public event showcasing the cutting edge Australian research carried out by aspiring and established female researchers in the Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths and Medicine disciplines.

The 2019 UOW speakers were supported by Astha Singh, Marketing Manager for iAccelerate, UOW’s business incubator located on the Innovation Campus, and Soapbox Science Sydney committee member. As part of the training program for speakers, she developed a workshop-style session that included discussions around what the speakers think their biggest challenges are when they face public speaking environments. The greatest challenge, they thought, was to de-jargonise the complex work and research they do and then present it to the general members of the public.

The top 12 speakers were selected from a bag of 72 applications keeping in mind the criteria of diversity, their research areas, merit and their science outreach experience.

Yee Lian Chew, a researcher affiliated with the Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute and lecturer in UOW’s School of Chemistry and Molecular Bioscience, was one of the speakers of the day, “It was truly an amazing day – it was a little bit terrifying to step onto the Soapbox but it turned out to be really fun to talk to a diverse audience about my research and hear all of their super interesting questions. It was also awesome to hear from the other speakers about the cutting-edge and important research that these amazing women are doing in Australia today.”

Maina Portella Garcia, Research Fellow from our School of Mechanical, Materials, Mechatronic and Biomedical Engineering also attended the event. “This was my first time participating at the SoapBox Science. It was an amazing experience to be part of an event that promotes women in Science and also promotes science in an easy language, accessible to everybody. It was an inspiring day.” she said.