COSAM News Articles 2022 May 2022 Rand-Fleming, one of 10 students selected in the nation for science advocacy training, seeks to impact underrepresented student groups in STEM

Rand-Fleming, one of 10 students selected in the nation for science advocacy training, seeks to impact underrepresented student groups in STEM

Published: 05/31/2022

By: Maria Gebhardt

Chelsea Rand-Fleming, a graduate student in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, is one of 10 delegates across the entire nation who has been selected for the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology’s 2022 Advocacy Training Program, or ATP.

She applied for the opportunity and her dedication for outreach activities at Auburn demonstrate her passion for outreach. Not only is Rand-Fleming the president of the Auburn Young Chemists Committee chapter, but she actively participates in outreach events with the National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers, or NOBCChE.  

“The ATP program will allow me to further serve as a role model to my daughter by displaying the importance of advocacy, outreach and service,” she said. “It’s my goal to also demonstrate that we all have the potential to have an impact of the world.”

Rand-Fleming believes that every student can make a difference.

“It is important to me to carve my own path that shows everyone has the ability to create a unique path and make a direct impact in their community,” she added.

The three-month program includes online training from May through August and weekly virtual meetings with the entire cohort to discuss topics and hear from guest speakers. The group will learn how to advocate and specific information about science policy in the federal government and U.S. Congress.

ATP is broken down into three sections, Science policy, advocacy and the federal government; Science policy strategy; and Advocating before, during and after. Each student also will complete an independent advocacy activity as part of the program.

As a direct result of her ATP selection, Rand-Fleming seeks to learn more about student interest in scientific policy at Auburn University and wants to develop networking opportunities with local middle and high schools.

After she graduates with her doctoral degree in chemistry, Rand-Fleming is passionate about pursuing a non-traditional career path.

“I want to work in outreach with a role in diversity, equity and inclusion or in the area of government affairs,” she said. “I am looking forward to helping historically underrepresented groups find ways to overcome challenges and become the scientific leaders of tomorrow.”

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