Reflections from Maya Ajmera, publisher of Science News
In this season of giving, we here at Society for Science & the Public wanted to thank all of you, our members and readers, for supporting us throughout the year. As 2015 draws to a close, I am proud to look back on our accomplishments and to share my thoughts about how the Society is poised to further its critical mission in the coming year.
In September, we launched the Science News in High Schools program. Thanks to generous sponsors (including members like you), more than 170,000 students and 10,000 educators in 245 schools from 22 states and the United Kingdom now have access to Science News. Many of you also helped fund our teacher guides — 331 supporters donated $35,751. This sponsorship gives schools access to Science News at no cost to students, teachers or the school district.
Science News is also going to China. We signed an agreement with the Beijing-based Publishing House Electronics Industry this fall. The publisher will produce four “mooks” (magazine-book hybrids), each a compilation of Science News articles on a specific topic from the last four years. The first issue focuses on humans and society and will inform readers about the most fascinating and important advances in anthropology, archaeology and human behavior.
We also have four e-books coming soon through a partnership with Diversion, a publisher based in New York. Our first e-book, due out in spring 2016, will explore the topic of time, from the role of the second law of thermodynamics in fundamental physics to the biological circadian rhythms that govern sleeping, waking and jet lag. Future collections will explore subjects such as consciousness, cosmic mysteries and gravity.
In November, we announced a partnership between CommonLit and our online, award-winning Science News for Students. Educator guides with Common Core–aligned questions, discussion topics and paired passage suggestions are now available for select Science News for Students articles. The aim is to expose more students to high-quality science news and support literacy development in grades five through 12.
And, of course, we continue to provide the quality science journalism you have come to expect on a wide breadth of scientific topics and research. We are proud to have been recognized this year by the Online News Association, AAAS/Kavli Science Journalism awards and Eddie & Ozzie awards from Folio, among others. Our talented staff of science journalists, editors and designers has an exciting suite of topics planned for the upcoming year, so stay tuned.
In addition, we are:
- Gearing up for the 75th anniversary celebration of the Science Talent Search in March 2016;
- Expanding the SSP Advocate Grant program, which provides stipends to individuals who shepherd disadvantaged students through the science competition application process;
- Building on the successes of Broadcom MASTERS, now sponsored by the Broadcom Foundation through the Society’s 100th anniversary in 2021, and the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair to inspire even more students to participate in hands-on research.
As subscribing members, you help us achieve our mission of informing, educating and inspiring the world about science. We thank you and ask you to continue to help spread the good word about the importance of science in our everyday lives — by volunteering at a local science fair, mentoring a student, gifting a Science News subscription to a science enthusiast in your life and otherwise sharing your experience and knowledge to help create a more scientifically literate world. Happy holidays from the Society!