Faculty of Science launches leadership program for integrated science students

Integrated Science Students leadership group pose outside the Life Sciences building at York U

Forty students in the Integrated Science program, including last year’s cohort, were at York University on Sunday, Sept. 24 learning how to become better science citizens.

The Faculty of Science hosted a full-day symposium that day – the first part of a new leadership program called ISCInvolved, which is exclusively for integrated science students. The symposium was a modified version of Bethune College’s Basic Peer Leadership Training. It included sessions on leadership, resilience, science communication, education and campus resources.

The participants in the integrated science student leadership event pose for a cameo in the Life Sciences common area on York’s Keele campus

“The symposium allowed us an opportunity to meet last year’s integrated science students and hear about their own experiences and tips in many aspects, such as balancing academics and personal life,” says student Matthew Lim. “Moreover, I was able to learn how to communicate effectively through the scope of science and how to become a leader and an educator to the community through various STEM outreach programs. I feel much more confident and educated about my university life as a whole.”

The second part of ISCInvolved will take place in the winter term when teams of students will be paired with a faculty member or staff adviser engaged in science outreach for the completion of a small leadership project. The students will devote about 25 hours of extracurricular effort to one of the following initiatives:

  • Integrated Science recruitment efforts
  • Let’s Talk Science at York University
  • Math Kangaroo (coordinated by Professors Amenda Chow and Ada Chan in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics)
  • Community outreach at the Observatory (coordinated by University Professor Paul Delaney in the Department of Physics & Astronomy)
  • Science Education Station (coordinated by Professor Michael Di Robertis in the Department of Physics & Astronomy)
  • SEEDS (coordinated by Professor Sapna Sharma in the Department of Biology)
  • SOLTA (coordinated by Professor Scott Menary in in the Department of Physics & Astronomy)

“The ISCInvolved program is a win-win for everyone involved,” says Alex Mills, associate dean of students in the Faculty of Science. “The students gain experience in science outreach and grow their leadership, communication, collaboration and mentorship skills – helping prepare them for success in their undergraduate career and beyond. And faculty and staff members are supported in their outreach efforts.”

Integrated science is a first-year program that integrates biology, chemistry, physics and math in the context of current scientific frontiers and real-world issues. The program is limited to 50 students who have demonstrated consistent excellence in Grade 12 sciences and math. For more details, visit science.yorku.ca/IS.