In July 1999, I took my final curtsey as an aspiring ballet dancer in London. At the time, I was devastated, having been ‘assessed out’ by the ballet school I’d attended the year after I finished high school in Ireland. I wish I knew then what I know now: there are no endings in a career, just different paths. It took a few more iterations for me to learn that lesson. I hope my experience can provide some reassurance for anyone out there grappling with their next career move.
Scientific outreach activities play an important role in disseminating knowledge, connecting the general public to research and breaking down scientific scepticism barriers. However, the vision impaired community is often disadvantaged when the most common audio-visual approach of scientific communication is applied. Here we integrated tactile clues in the scientific communication of immune processes involved in the autoimmune skin disease psoriasis. We encouraged participation of the vision impaired community by engagement with tactile scientific origami art, a haptic poster and wood carved molecular models. Readily accessible science communication that engages a number of senses is a critical step towards making science more inclusive, and engaging for individuals with a wide range of sensory abilities. The Sensory Science approach aligns with the principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion and helps create a more informed and scientifically literate public.
In the unique landscape of immunology research in New Zealand, this article explores the collaborative networks spanning the two main islands, through a conversation with Associate Professor Joanna Kirman and Dr. Robert Weinkove. The discussions delve into their dynamic collaborations with countries like Asia, Australia, and the United States from their labs at the University of Otago and the Malaghan Institute respectively, provides insight into the translational research landscape of New Zealand, and the integration of Māori culture into all aspects of scientific research and clinical practise. Kirman’s work in understanding immunological memory in tuberculosis and Weinkove’s research in cancer immunotherapies, particularly CAR-T cells, are highlighted. The natural beauty and accessibility of New Zealand supports it’s research diversity.
Emeritus Professor Margaret Baird forged a luminary career for her pioneering research investigating the role of dendritic cells (DCs) in cancer and infectious diseases, as an inspirational lecturer at the University of Otago and a role model to many. In this article celebrating the 100-year anniversary of ICB, we discuss Margaret’s career and life journey through the eyes of her family and co-authors, as we explore her many publications in ICB and beyond.
Laboratory science sometimes looks like it’s built exclusively for young people, but if you look closely, you’ll find another group of scientists waiting to join your lab: those of us who didn’t quite launch our careers on a normal trajectory. Welcoming a second-career scientist into your lab takes time and resources, but may just be well worth it. Here’s what one second-career scientist wants you to know about supporting second careers in immunology.