CQUniversity sleep researcher Dr Grace Vincent has today been announced as one of Australia's newest Superstars of STEM.
Dr Vincent is one of 60 diverse brilliant scientists' technologists' engineers and mathematicians who want to step into the media spotlight as STEM experts – and will be officially announced today by the Minister for Industry and Science' Ed Husic MP.
Minister Husic congratulated the newest Superstars of STEM on stepping into the public arena to help inspire the next generations of diverse young Australians into STEM.
'The need to boost diversity in our science' technology' engineering and mathematics sector is urgent'' he said.
"There are huge skills shortages that can be addressed if we put our minds and collective effort to it – which means we have to draw deeply on our nation's expertise from all corners of the community.
'By doing so' we can deliver a stellar boost to our national economy and enable Australia to meet the growing demand for STEM-trained workers.
'I've always been a fan of the way the Superstars of STEM program pushes to deliver a diverse STEM workforce and ensures the next generation of scientists and technologists have visible role models.
'I just know these talented experts and communicators will play their part inspiring Australia's young people – from all backgrounds – into science and technology.'
Science & Technology Australia (STA) Chief Executive Officer Misha Schubert said the program gave women and non-binary talent in STEM crucial skills and confidence to step into expert commentary roles in the media.
'We know it's really hard to be what you can't see'' she said.
'That's why this game-changing program is helping to smash stereotypes of what a scientist' technologist' engineer or mathematician looks like.
'By becoming highly visible role models in the media' these Superstars of STEM are showing our diverse next generations of young people - especially our girls and non-binary kids - that STEM is for them.
'Superstars of STEM is powerfully shifting the dial on diversity in Australia's science and technology sectors. The Australian Government's investment in this world-leading program is bolstering diversity in a sector that will shape our future economy. We are so grateful for it.'
Dr Vincent said she was thrilled to have been chosen from a highly-competitive national field.
'It is really exciting to be selected to be part of the program'' Dr Vincent said.
'I am a big believer that science should be accessible to everyone. It builds support for science as a discipline' informs decision making and promotes understanding of its wider relevance to society'' she explained.
'I am committed to public outreach activities to share scientific discoveries and to improve general science literacy in the community.'
Dr Vincent's research aims to improve sleep in our communities with the goal of creating a safe' more productive Australian workforce.
'The Superstars of STEM program will allow me to build my public profile so that science can reach those that really need it' especially young Australians and those living in rural and remote areas'' she said.
'The gap between research and practice is vast – effective science communication bridges that gap. We can only do this by sharing our research in a meaningful' accessible way. Developing skills to communicate science to the general public requires deliberate practice' careful attention to language and adaptation of the narrative to the audience – all of which I hope to learn as part of the Superstars of STEM Program.'
Dr Vincent said the Superstars of STEM program was all about inspiring the next generation into STEM and growing a diverse STEM workforce.
'Similarly' CQUniversity continues to strive to be a leader in removing participations barriers to world class education and research' particularly amongst under-represented groups and under-serviced communities' so it is a real honour to represent CQUniversity on the program.'
Superstars of STEM is an initiative of STA funded by the Australian Government's Department of Industry' Science and Resources.
The next 60 Superstars of STEM will join the program in 2023 and 2024.
Through a highly competitive selection process' the program selects 60 women and non-binary STEM experts and gives them the training' confidence' networks and experience to become sought-after media commentators as experts in their fields.
Dr Vincent was also recently recognised with the Nick Antic Career Development Award at the Australasian Sleep Association's 2022 conference which recognises emerging leaders in the field.