What should you do with yourself after you’re all done with your exams in Durham? Well, to answer this question with another question, how better to spend a gorgeous summer evening than to head down to the pub and indulge in conversation on science and society?
Come and broaden your horizons
Pint of Science, a worldwide science festival with the aim of making science accessible, was what facilitated this night of knowledge, bringing me down to a local pub (one of the four venues this year in Durham alone) for my evening. As a Liberal Arts student, I love broadening my horizons when it comes to the knowledge I get to absorb, and this experience certainly sated the scientific curiosity that I sometimes miss out on exploring in comparison to my STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Maths) student peers.
So many events to choose from
After wrestling with the array of options of events throughout the week, I decided to attend an event called ‘The Living Earth: Safe Home and Disaster Zone’, which hosted three talks led by postgraduate and PhD academics from Durham University across the span of the evening.
Some subject matter included:
- an exploration of life on Earth and the Gaia Hypothesis as a principle of discourse between philosophy and the science of the biosphere
- an investigation of disasters and their consequences through a lens of intersectionality
- offshore wind energy
Each of these talks were carefully constructed and presented to engage, rather than alienate, the audience. The complex topics provided learning insights; the audience included both scientifically-minded individuals with a passion for these areas, and those like me with no background knowledge in these fields, driven to attend simply by the inspiration to learn something new! Each talk was concluded by our speakers opening the floor to questions, an opportunity which was fully grasped through the more intimate setting of the talk. It gave time to expand upon areas of interest, further clarify details, and enabled the audience to reflect on these new subject matters.
Learning made fun
The night was a fun departure from my regular routine of learning, drawing me out of my comfortable Liberal Arts shell. The ethos of Pint of Science just goes to show how we can and should feel free to approach scientific learning without the boundaries of prior knowledge. I am lucky that Durham, as a city, is a hub of knowledge and learning, and that I have events like this on my doorstep. Not only does Pint of Science host events across the week to get involved in, but it is also an annual festival – so check it out if you are looking for a post-exam fix of learning either now or in the future!
If you are interested in learning more about Pint of Science, click here: https://pintofscience.co.uk/
If you are interested in getting involved with events, in and around Durham, check out @duthingstodo on Instagram
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