Media Coverage

My Conversation With Alan Alda

Photo Credits: Courtesy of Fairleigh Dickinson University/New Jersey Speaker Series

By: Cathy Chester
The Huffington Post
November 5, 2014
It would be easy to write about Alan Alda by only recounting stories that everyone already knows, such as his tremendous successes in television, movies and theatre. Continue reading

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Alda Center’s Valeri Lantz-Gefroh and Evonne Kaplan-Liss Talk with The Scope

The Scope, November 7, 2014
Two of our faculty members, Valeri Lantz-Gefroh and Evonne Kaplan-Liss, had spoke on science radio talk show The Scope.
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Actor Alan Alda advises AAMC attendees on how to talk about medical science

Modern Healthcare, November 8, 2014

The public is “on a blind date” with science and medicine, said actor Alan Alda. The two sides don’t know each other very well and they’re still deciding whether they trust and feel safe with each other. That could be why patients demand to receive a non-existent Ebola vaccine but pass on getting a flu shot. Continue reading

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Improv Helps Ph.D.’s Explain Their Work—and Loosen Up

A graduate student with a habit of swaying while talking has his feet held still by his instructor 
as classmates watch during a public-speaking seminar at the U. of California at Irvine. Photo by Todd Bigelow for The Chronicle.

The Chronicle of Higher Education, November 10, 2014

The question surprised Lyl Tomlinson. The graduate student in neuroscience was telling a room full of about 150 people about his research into how exercise improved memory in mice, when a query from a panel threw him a curveball: Could there be a link between yoga and memory?
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Making a Connection with Alan Alda

The New York Academy of Sciences, November 3, 2014

Alan Alda gets uncomfortable making small talk at parties, but he is passionate about authentic, effective communication. Especially where science is concerned. Continue reading

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Exercising Communication

The Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science Workshop. Photo by SETAC.

SETAC Global, October 2014

I didn’t mean to break Skylar’s nose, but that medicine ball just slipped from my hands. And I’m sure she never expected physical injury, this was after all, just a scientific workshop. But then, it was so much more. Continue reading

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Creating buzz about science to help solve pressing global challenges

Phys.Org, August, 2014

Leading science communicators will share their latest strategies on how to capture the coveted attention of young students, the public and policymakers to strengthen the scientific enterprise. They will speak at the 248th National Meeting and Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world’s largest scientific society, taking place Aug. 10 to 14 in San Francisco. Continue reading

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Smarter than a sixth grader?

CNBC, May 2014

“MASH” Star Alda Alda talks about the role of his lifetime. The actor turned teacher reveals how he’s encouraging kids’ love of science through his “The Flame Challenge,” where scientists attempt to answer deceptively simple questions and are then judged by thousands of 11-year-olds. Continue reading

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Alan Alda and Eric Kandel discuss science, psychiatry and the media

Elsevier Connect, May 14, 2014

Dr. Eric Kandel is the only psychiatrist to win a Nobel Prize. Alan Alda gained fame as Army surgeon Hawkeye Pierce on M*A*S*H. Both have brought public awareness to science from their appearances on PBS. And both received equal amounts of respect and laughter as they told a packed audience at the Javitz Center how they became interested in science and psychiatry. Continue reading

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Legendary Actor Alan Alda Visits Weill Cornell’s Oates Communications Skills Curriculum

Weill Cornell Medical College, May 13, 2014
Alan Alda is not a doctor, but he sure was convincing as one on T.V. So it’s no surprise that after playing medic Hawkeye Pierce on “M*A*S*H*” and hosting PBS’ “Scientific American Frontiers” for 12 years that the legendary actor has become a crusader for effective science communication. Continue reading

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Alan Alda’s Quest to Put Story to Science

Scientific American, April 5, 2014
Science scares people. All too often, I am confronted by the perception of science as an institution of white-haired professors mixing colorful concoctions in underground laboratories. (Because, let’s be honest, most of the things chemists mix don’t have interesting colors). In the lab, the science is only as good as the data. On the street, however, it’s only as good as the story it tells.
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Memo to Science Nerds: Learn Improv

Al Jazeera America, March 15, 2014
“Scientists need to make abstract concepts clear and relevant to any audience they are talking to,” says Lantz-Gefroh. The exercise “is a playful way of getting them to be vivid and expressive when selling a nonsensical idea and then apply those lessons to talking about their real science.” Continue reading

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Acting Up

Nature Podcast, March 20, 2014
Science students at New York’s Stony Brook University are taking classes in improvisation to help improve the way they communicate. Continue reading

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Alan Alda, Spokesman for Science

The New York Times, Feb. 2014
The most popular speaker at the recent meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science was not a scientist but one of science’s most high-profile advocates: the actor and writer Alan Alda.
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Advocating and Teaching Science Communication

Telling Your Story: A How-To Guide / AAAS, January 2014
Persuaded of the need for researchers to learn how to tell their own stories–not just to scientists or science enthusiasts, but to the general public–he helped to found the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University in 2009. The center “works to enhance understanding of science by help- ing train the next generation of scientists and health profes- sionals to communicate more effectively with the public, public officials, the media and others outside their own discipline.” Continue reading

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End with the Beginning

Telling Your Story: A How-To Guide / AAAS, January 2014
Good communicators may have varying strate- gies for effectively presenting scientific material and connecting with audiences, but most agree on one thing: It’s often the last few moments that count the most. Continue reading

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Communication: Spontaneous scientists, January, 2014
A circle of scientists is gazing skyward, as if watching a ball fly through the air as they play an animated game of catch. But there is no ball — and this game is serious work. It is part of an exercise to help 12 scientists at the University of Connecticut (UConn) Health Center in Farmington to boost their communication skills. Continue reading

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Dartmouth Works With Alda Center for Communicating Science

Dartmouth Now, Jan. 3, 3014

During his Montgomery Fellow residency in October, Emmy-winning actor Alan Alda shared his science communication insights with more than 200 undergraduates and two master classes for graduate students and faculty members. Continue reading

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Alan Alda at Dartmouth College: The Joy of Science

Valley News, Oct. 2013
Alan Alda has told the story plenty of times before, and on Thursday delivered it to a packed, rapt house at the Hopkins Center. It goes like this: About a decade ago, he was on location, shooting Scientific American Frontiers, the PBS science show he hosts, atop a mountain in Chile. He felt a pain in his side. It soon became unbearable. Continue reading

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Give It To Me Straight: How Alan Alda, neighborhood bars and mime fit into an ongoing campaign to get scientists to tell it like it is

Hemispheres Magazine, Sept. 2013
“I’ve been using Dioscoreales as a model system,” says the botanist at the front of the room, describing her work in exploring the diversity of leaf forms, “because Dioscoreales are vining monocots, as you probably know.” Judging by the looks on their faces, the people in the audience probably don’t know this—which is pretty much the point of this exercise. Continue reading

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