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Shweta Ramdas's blog

On Communicating Science

I gave a talk about my field of work a couple of months ago, to an audience of people mostly outside it. After the talk, a senior member in the audience came over and asked me a few questions about genetics and health. He had a family history of lung cancer, he said, and he had always assumed it was because everybody in his family smoked a great deal. However, there was a recent article that said that 60% of cancer is due to bad luck, so he was confused about whether smoking had played any role at all.

The views expressed in this post are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect those of Rackham Graduate School or the University of Michigan.

Dear Fellow Graduate Student…

Did you just have planned a weekend that was full and enriching, with just the right balance between work and play, so you could start the week with an empty to-do list and plenty of spirit in the tank? Good for you!

Oh no, did you oversleep by 3 hours, and have now had to cancel "fun reading" time? And you now have to do laundry during Peak Laundry Hour? Yes, it's okay to pretend that the suspicious washer which doesn't seem to do much actually gets your clothes clean. Also okay to take a chance on the rotten dryer that's the only one not in use, let it swallow your coins, and then kick it a couple of times when it fails to start. If you do try tipping it forward to make it regurgitate your quarters, I'd recommend having a keen sense of balance.