COSAM Graduation Marshal pursues career teaching science and sparking excitement through community outreach
“As an undergraduate student at Auburn University, I personally saw how my passion for science can inspire others through K-12 outreach,” Grant Wilkinson said.
As the Spring 2021 Graduation Marshal for the College of Sciences and Mathematics (COSAM), he reflects back on the importance of outreach events.
“COSAM’s Office of Outreach hosts events such as Destination STEM that provided me an opportunity to show principles of physics through hands-on demonstrations,” Wilkinson added.
Wilkinson, who is graduating with a double major in chemistry and physics, prepares to continue his education this fall at Georgia Tech for quantum information science.
“I really enjoy both teaching and conducting research,” he said.
Wilkinson shares his excitement for his future in academia.
“I like to not just memorize the course material, but apply the skills to develop a picture of the concept in my mind,” Wilkinson said. “I hope to make an impact on my future students to do the same.”
His time on the Plains is filled with great memories.
“Definitely my most memorable moment was my very first day at Auburn,” he shared. “In 2017, I walked out of my physics class and observed the solar eclipse. It was something that I will never forget.”
He also has had experiences in the classroom that have made a lasting impression on him.
“Professors like Ed Thomas Jr. and Evangelos Miliordos use fun and interesting ways to teach their classes that encourage you to understand the ‘why’ behind the science,” Wilkinson said.
As COSAM’s Graduation Marshal, he offers advice for other COSAM students interesting in opening the door to research.
“My advice to students who want to approach faculty regarding research is that you just have to go for it,” he explained. “You will not lose anything if you asked and there is no current opportunity. However, if you do not ask, you could be missing out on an experience that could help shape your entire career.”
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