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Making an impact on local communities

Emma works in the Science Shop, a public engagement initiative based in Academic and Student Affairs. The Science Shop supports community organisations in developing research projects which are carried out by Queen's students as part of their degree programme. Student research conducted through the Science Shop makes a real impact on communities around Northern Ireland.

 

 

What does your role entail?

We have everything from health and environmental projects to policy questions, and even some hard maths questions. We work right across Northern Ireland, from Aughnacloy to Upperlands, though a lot of our work is in Belfast since many of the larger organisations are based here.


What type of projects are run through the Science Shop?

We have everything from health and environmental projects to policy questions, and even some hard maths questions. We work right across Northern Ireland, from Aughnacloy to Upperlands, though a lot of our work is in Belfast since many of the larger organisations are based here.

What impact does the Science Shop and its work have on the local community?

Student research, for some organisations, has acted as a catalyst for organisational change, contributed to funding bids, or provided evidence to help organisations secure policy change – ultimately leading to a range of positive impacts for the local community. But we know undertaking a project improves  student learning too, helping them to understand how research can impact on society. But we know undertaking a project improves  student learning too, helping them to understand how research can impact on society.

What is your favourite Science Shop project?

My favourite ever project was looking at the viability of using the graveyards in West Belfast as the basis of a social economy venture. I finally persuaded some management students to take it on and they did a great job on it.

 

About Emma

What is the best bit about your job?

Working with such a diverse range of people who are passionate about what they do. From our own Science Shop team to students, academics and communities, and even to international colleagues, the people I work with really care about their work.


What are you reading at the moment?

I’m reading a very challenging critique of service learning that an American colleague sent me for comment. It’s fascinating. I’ve got the new Stephen King on standby for afterwards though.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I’m a bit of a health freak. I took up yoga a few years ago and if I get a couple of spare minutes you might find me balancing on one foot – it’s a great way to refocus. I love weightlifting too!

What is your favourite app?

I really enjoy Twitter. It’s a great way to keep up with the doings of friends, colleagues and the wider world. And all in 140 characters.

Tell us an interesting fact about yourself.

One day I’d like to retire to Sicily. I’ve got a lot I want to do before then though!

 

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