KITE Senior Scientist Dr. Jennifer Campos is being recognized today with the prestigious NSERC Award for Science Promotion for her work supporting science education, youth outreach and advocacy for equity-deserving groups in STEM.
In addition to her role as KITE’s Associate Director, Academic, Campos is the Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in Multisensory Integration and Aging, Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Toronto, Chief Scientist of the Challenging Environment Assessment Laboratory, and Associate Scientific Director of AGE-WELL.
This award from NSERC – the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada – recognizes individuals and groups who have demonstrated incredible impact promoting science to the general public.
“Science promotion is perhaps more important now than ever,” said Campos. “Communicating one’s science is not only critical for generating broad public interest and sharing new knowledge, but it is valuable for scientists themselves to hone their ideas and achieve clarity in their thinking.”
Campos has been an enthusiastic and dedicated champion of science promotion for more than 20 years. Her support for outreach and science promotion includes spearheading the KITE Young Innovators (kYI) program, which has introduced the world of science to more than 35,000 youth through lab tours, design competitions, researcher panels, career seminars, and hands-on activities since 2009.
“Enhancing science literacy and generating excitement about science at a very early age provides a solid foundation for our future thinkers, innovators, and citizens. As such, some of my most valued science promotion activities have been with youth, who I hope become inspired, but who also provide inspiration,” added Campos.
Under her leadership, kYI has developed programs and courses aimed at encouraging underrepresented and equity-deserving youth to pursue careers in STEM, efforts that are being amplified through UHN’s IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Accessibility) sub-committee for youth outreach, which Campos chairs.
“Campos has demonstrated ongoing innovation and creativity that has delivered a lasting influence on students,” said KITE Director Dr. Milos R. Popovic. “The success of her youth outreach efforts at UHN is a testament to Campos’ vision and leadership and we are thrilled that she is being recognized with this award.”
Dr. Campos will receive $10,000 in funding from the NSERC to support her outstanding outreach initiatives.