We aim to bridge the communication gap between scientists and their communities by creating and supporting opportunities to foster public interest in scientific research.
Our mission is to foster public interest in primary science research. As scientists, we often find it difficult to express the excitement and importance of our work to our non-science family and friends. This communication barrier is also reflected in the current dour funding climate for primary research projects. As such, we believe that conscious efforts must be made to create new advocates for science research. Project Bridge holds workshops for scientists to strengthen communication skills. We also utilize a grassroots approach to address these issues through our multiple community events. This increased interaction between researchers and their community will increase the appreciation and understanding of the importance of scientific research.
Anti-Racism in Science
Project Bridge was founded as a graduate student organization in 2012 to improve access to the ivory tower of science, built up for centuries by predominantly white researchers. Like many historically white institutions that have contributed to structural racism, the research community is long overdue for deep introspection. The unjust murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless others have highlighted only a small number of everyday atrocities committed against Black individuals. Black lives matter. Each Black life lost, especially to unjust police brutality, is devastating.
As members of the academic community, we must listen, and do better to address these inequities now. Research institutions must improve access and retention for current and future Black researchers and clinicians; promote inclusion of Black individuals in clinical trials; and remove faculty, staff, students, and other university affiliates who espouse racist beliefs or act with racist motivations. This comprehensive list by the Association for Prevention Teaching and Research provides additional actions to address structural racism in academia.
With chapters in Baltimore, Denver, and Indianapolis, Project Bridge aims to develop connections with scientists and the community, foster public interest in science, and improve the sharing of knowledge and access to research institutions. As trainee-led groups within academic institutions, we pledge to keep accountable those in power to actively dismantle the walls of the ivory tower, reflect on how we have contributed to systemic racism, work only with groups and individuals who align with anti-racist idealogy, use the platforms we have created to amplify the voices of Black scientists and individuals, and advocate for policies and actions that improve access and retention for Black researchers. Changing the culture of academia has historically been slow. However, things must change now, quickly, and effectively. Black lives depend on it.
Leaders of Project Bridge
Cody Call, Former Co-President, Project Bridge Baltimore
Matthew Davidson, Former Chair of Government Relations, Project Bridge Colorado
Write to the Baltimore mayor and city council about diverting funds in the Baltimore city budget from the police department to initiatives that benefit the health and well-being of our community without endangering Black lives.