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Health, Science & Tech

Carnegie Mellon University Science Students Tell Stories

Carnegie Mellon University science students want you to know that they’re just like the rest of us.

That is why they are hosting The Story Collider, a national storytelling project that produces live shows and podcasts, Monday night at the Rex Theater.

Graduate and undergraduate CMU students with majors ranging from computer science to physics and biology will share stories about how science has impacted their lives. 

“Think of the modern version of people sitting around a campfire sharing their personal lives,” Adona Iosis, a CMU student and part of Public Communication for Researchers (PCR), said. “We have five different students that are going to come on stage, and they’re going to talk, without notes, in a very personal way about what’s happened to them and what’s cool in their lives and what they think other people should know.”

Carnegie University’s PCR, which works to promote science communication skills, organized the event.

Iosis said the show is a way to break stereotypes.

“I think a lot of people think about scientists as being kind of distant and hard to understand, but really, we’re like everybody else,” Iosis said. “We fall in love, get in trouble, we worry about fitting in the community, we’ve got good days at work and bad days at work, so Story Collider talks to these people, the scientists, and brings out these stories and shares them with everybody.”

Iosis said these stories will range from falling in love in Africa to one student thinking they lost $300 million worth of equipment in space.

“We have stories about trying to cope with the Pittsburgh accent and trying to fit into the science community with that,” Iosis said. “They [the audience] should expect to laugh and maybe to cry and in general, have a fantastic evening.”

Iosis said more than 20 students pitched the Story Collider producers stories and the Story Collider producers chose the five.

She said people should come to the show because it will be fun, but also to acknowledge that science is everywhere.

“How we get places, how we talk to people, it’s happening with science and technology, and more and more, if we’re not aware of that, we’re going to remain behind our times,” Iosis said. “If people come and listen to these stories and start getting a better understanding of what this entire science thing is about, then they will be a better part of our community.”

Tickets are $10 and will be sold at the door or Story Collider’s website.