Teaching Fellowship with Science Corps

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Science Corps Logo

About

Science Corps helps empower the next generation of global scientists by placing PhDs to teach and to develop scientific capacity in regions that lack access to STEM education. Science Corps Fellows support schools and projects by teaching, creating science curricula, hosting workshops, and demonstrating experiments that provide students with hands-on STEM experience. Fellows have recently completed their PhD in a STEM subject or will be graduating soon. Fellows are passionate about their field and looking for an opportunity to leverage their experience to teach and inspire students abroad. Fellows help bridge the global gap in STEM educational opportunities by creating lasting tools and curricula for the sites where they teach.

Highlights
  • teaching
  • science
  • abroad

Questions & Answers

Reviews

100%
based on 2 reviews
  • Benefits 10
  • Support 10
  • Fun 9.5
  • Facilities 9
  • Safety 10
Showing 1 - 2 of 2
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Vic
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Great support, beautiful experience, wonderful locals!

This was a wonderful experience. At every point of the fellowship (and well after it ends), you feel that the Science Corps team are genuinely concerned about not just your well-being, but also your career prospects, hopes and plans as a budding scientist.

The two locations I worked in were both stunningly beautiful, the people were wonderfully kind and caring, I always felt safe, and got to enjoy and learn a lot about their rich cultures. The students are of course a highlight, providing inspiration and a constant realisation that you're having a positive impact, that you're in the right place doing the right thing.

...then there was swimming and diving in the outstanding Philippine sea, or hiking the peaceful trails of the Indian Himalayas... not bad at all...

One thing is important to keep in mind if you're considering Science Corps: this is NOT about teaching, it's about science. You will very likely be teaching a fair amount, but the primary goal is to raise scientific awareness and capacity, not just to cover a Chemistry or Biology class in a school. Put another way: if you feel that you love teaching science, but you don't really see yourself as a researcher in the long run, this is probably not for you. Science Corps fellows are expected to be career scientists who just take a 6-month break (typically before continuing on to a postdoc) to help raise scientific capacity in places that need it, hopefully inspiring a few children to become scientists along the way. This is why it's so important that you are committed not just to teaching science, but to science itself: your passion for science is the key thing that Science Corps wants you to bring to the host sites.

Your main task will be creating a lot of teaching materials, to help local educators teach science (or more broadly, STEM) once you've gone back home after completing your fellowship. It is extremely important that anything you create can be used without your supervision by teachers with very minimal science training, since the long-term goal of Science Corps is to build science capacity (again, not just to teach science). Science Corps will then arrange for the materials that you create to be shared online. Therefore, you have the potential to help a lot of students beyond those with whom you interact directly.

All in all, I recommend this fellowship without hesitation if you're serious and passionate about science itself, about communicating science, and about increasing equity in the access to science for all.

What would you improve about this program?
More sites! If you know of a site somewhere in the developing world, preferably run by locals who are committed to equitable education (not necessarily just science), please go to science-corps.org and let them know about it.
Default avatar
Hyunjin
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A great fellowship for recent PhD graduates to have positive impact with science and add diversity to your experience

Towards the end of my Ph.D. program, I was looking for a postdoc position in research. This was the most conventional path, even though I felt a little lost what I wanted to follow as postdoc research. When I saw the recruitment for the SC fellowship, I thought that it offered everything that I wanted at the moment. I wanted to recenter myself again, as a person and as a scientist - I needed some space to reflect on how I want to live the next chapter of my personal and professional paths. I wanted to do some good with science - I needed some reassurance that science was not only a selfish ambition but it could really empower people with logic and skills. I wanted to do something different - I needed some time to be outside the competitive academic environment and go out into the world to enjoy other aspects of life. What could be more perfect than teaching science at a high school in a remote and beautiful island of the Philippines for 6 months with every expense paid? Thus, I chose the SC fellowship over another postdoc at a prestigious institute - for me at that moment, the SC fellowship had much more to offer!
The biggest surprise for me was how receptive and appreciative my students were at CVIF! Before joining CVIF, I had a vague idea of how teaching science to high school students would be like. However, when I first stood in front of the class, with chalk in my hand and a blackboard behind my back, and I saw the twinkling eyes of 120 high school students, I realized that I was in the real world! I could be - when a student looks back into her/his high school period - that teacher who inspired her/him to pursue STEM. These students from this remote and beautiful village had high hopes for their future, and they really appreciated someone from an outer world coming to help them achieve their dreams. They had interesting science questions, and most of them worked very hard to absorb what I could offer as a recent Ph.D. graduate. For example, I gave the students in Grade 11 to do a science communication project along with the qualitative research, and I was amazed at what creativity the students came up with! They made posters, magazine/newspaper articles, and produced cartoon videos, vlogs, radio news to communicate their results with the general public.
Completing the Science Corps fellowship did shape my idea about my professional future - that I miss research! I realized teaching is a difficult job. It requires the skills of communication, persistence, and most importantly a huge amount of patience. I also had to be sensitive to the perspective of the students - their environment and condition. All these skills forgotten during my Ph.D. could be evaluated and polished during this fellowship, as teaching gave immediate feedback. I could also keep some research aspects during the fellowship, by developing activity sheets for Dynamic Learning and organizing a workshop for local scientists on the Computational Methods in Biology.
My most important takeaway from the experience was that STEM does empower people with logic and skills! I was so glad to see how serious the students were, especially the female students, in learning programming. I imagined how these skills would change their future - both in their mind and in the real world.