Lockheed Martin Employee wins Early Career Physics Communicator Award

27 November 2017

University of Central Lancashire graduate Jasmin Evans has won the Early Career Physics Communicator Award after impressing the judges with her drive and enthusiasm in outreach events for visually-impaired children and adults.

Jasmin, who graduated with a BSc in physics from the University of Central Lancashire, and currently works at Lockheed Martin UK Ampthill, was one of four finalists competing for the Early Career Physics Communicator Award, an annual prize given by the Institute’s Physics Communicators Group, at an event held by the group on 24 November. She was presented with a certificate and £250 prize after giving a presentation on her astronomy outreach events.

The award is the group prize of the Physics Communicators Group, which organised the annual event and invited physicist and broadcaster Dr Helen Czerski to give a keynote talk on effectively communicating science to the public.

Also competing were Chico Camargo, a PhD student in systems biology at the University of Oxford; Jane MacArthur, who is in the third year of her PhD in planetary science at the University of Leicester; and second-year PhD student Emma Osbourne from the University of Southampton, where she is researching gravitational wave emission from neutron stars.

In her presentation, Jasmin talked about various outreach events she had been involved in, including her Touching Space project, funded by the International Astronomical Union, where she acts as project manager. Touching Space was set up to work with local charities to bring astronomy to children and adults with visual impairments and other forms of disability, using sensory activities to provide a different approach to learning that does not rely on the visual aspect of astronomy.

Speaking after the prize was announced; Jasmin said she did not expect her name to be called out but felt “excited and really grateful for being shortlisted and nominated, and thankful to everyone who helped me out along the way”.

When asked about what drove her towards creating outreach programmes for people with visual impairments, she said: “It all comes down to sharing a passion; my passion is in astronomy and I wanted to share that with people who don’t get the opportunity to learn more about the subject. I don’t see why having a disability should get in the way of you being interested in science.”