This week I had the pleasure of meeting up with my good friend Jayde Lovell whom I hadn’t seen for a few years. Jayde is a Science Communicator and host of YouTube’s The Young Turk Network’s SciQ Channel and also works at the New York Academy of Sciences.
(I encourage you all to subscribe the SciQ channel as you’ll find it informative – even if you don’t have an interest in science).
Jayde and I met when I was in Rotary some years ago and we’ve maintained the connection through social media sharing tidbits of our lives and our work. I admire her greatly. She’s a passionate, enthusiastic and has an incredibly big heart. She’s also someone who’s not afraid to take risks and followed her dream of living and working in New York to inspire a new generation of people to love and be passionate about science.
She’s also a bit of a legend.
Last year she won a competition to pitch an idea to producers for the next MacGuyver series. Now, being a person growing up in the 80s and watching MacGuyver on the screen create a thermonuclear device with a paper clip and some duct tape, I was in awe. How can anyone replace Richard Dean Anderson? And yet, her idea was enough to sway the judges.
I believe it was her passion to help young women aspire for careers into the fields of STEM.
Together with her friend, Bec Gill, a film maker, they decided on a whim to leave their corporate jobs from a multinational advertising agency and travel to New York.
They said that they did not have any firm plans about what they were going to do when they got there but they knew they’d start with creating a YouTube channel called Did Someone Say Science? and provide quirky but educational videos dispelling the myths around science and explaining it in simple every day language.
In fact, this short video here says exactly what they’re about…
It’s exactly these stories from young people who have vision that I find inspiring, enthralling and admirable.
We talked about our respective work and in some ways there were similarities. We were pushing boundaries – encouraging people to see things differently when it came to education and learning. Their medium is through video and blending the creative elements of popular culture and at times, parody, to explain somewhat difficult concepts of science. Mine through reflective and authentic blogging of my personal learning and working experiences.
We spent the afternoon interviewing each other for our respective projects. I interviewed Jayde and asked her about how she uses digital learning to communicate science to her audience. The interview will be aired on LearningNow TV in the next couple of months so standby for that. (You will need to register at LearningNow TV first to view the show in real time although recordings will be made available afterwards).
Jayde also interviewed me and we spoke the importance of building personal networks for learning while Bec took the video. (I have to add that it was a pleasure to watch and learn from Bec how she took charge of the video, moved furniture around adeptly for the best natural light. I have much to learn Obi Wan…)
Bec called our interviews “Collab Camp” – a concept which I loved.
She said a CollabCamp is where a group of people from diverse backgrounds and fields come together to collaborate on a theme and make creations.
The idea of CollabCamp is to encourage people to learn through challenges, work with people outside their field to expose them to new ideas and foster innovation and creativity. (I see applications for this with corporate Learning and Development teams who can facilitate such collaborative learning experiences between their business unit clients and external stakeholders across other business and community – if it’s not already happening but possibly, Learning and Development is not driving it).
I took my own video footage that day as a bit of an experiment and pulled together some bloopers on the day.
My key reflections of the day with Jayde and Bec were:
- Have a Dream – and Just Do It: what may seem daunting to do (such as Jayde and Bec leaving their jobs, friends and families to live and work in a new city overseas) is really a step towards your goal. Just do something, anything – no matter how small to get you out of your comfort zone.
- Use every experience as a learning experience: when you come together with people who inspire, enlighten, excite you with ideas and passion, seek out ways to collaborate on a mutual project and create something together. No matter how big or small it is. Make that meeting memorable. Have fun, have some laughter, enjoy the moment.
- Be thankful: many people will think what you’re doing and creating is frivolous or immature. Many won’t understand it. Others however, will be inspired by you even though they may not have the courage to follow their dreams. Be thankful that you are in the position to do so and that you’re helping others to see possibilities.