Back to School!

It’s that time of year again…time to welcome new Vikings to Barrie North Collegiate! The Link Crew Leaders are ready!

Link Crew Leaders

Link Crew Leaders

A Meeting with Minsky

I made a quick 23.5 hour stop in Boston on the way home from tracking near-Earth asteroids at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Met Marvin Minsky (!!!) at his home in Boston and had a most insightful chat on topics ranging from Deep Learning to quantum computing. Also visited MIT media lab. What a day.

A Meeting with Marvin Minsky

A Meeting with Marvin Minsky

A Summer of Asteroid-Tracking

As my 40-day summer adventure tracking near-Earth asteroids at the University of Colorado at Boulder draws to a close, I find myself experiencing an overwhelming feeling of sadness. Sure, it has been, by far, the most intellectually and physically challenging experience I have ever had in my life. Between countless hours of graduate-level mathematics, physics, and astronomy lectures; struggling through a constant onslaught of problem sets; writing every line of code in image analysis programs to least squares plate reduction programs; getting telescope time at 2 in the morning; sleeping for an average of 4 hours a day for a month and a half; writing thousands of lines of code to do the orbit determination for a near-Earth asteroid; and penning and entire research paper on my findings in just 18 hours, my time in Colorado was grueling.

But…I also experienced guest lectures from Nobel Laureates, I encrypted messages on an original Enigma machine, I was fully immersed in the natural beauty of Boulder, and I spent 40 days with the most bright and inspiring group of young people from all around the world in my life.

Needless to say, my summer in Colorado has been the best one yet.

When I get a chance, I’ll upload my paper and orbit determination code on GitHub. For now, here were some of the highlights:

An Evening of Literature

I had the pleasure of speaking alongside Margaret Atwood at this year’s annual L3 Writers’ Conference in Barrie. What was a science nerd doing at a climate change focused Writers’ conference? Check out the (long and filmed-on-a-not-so-great-video-camera-by-my-parents-from-the-audience) video below!

Science Expo 2015 – Synapse: Crossroads of Global Innovation

For the last three years, I’ve had the pleasure of volunteering with the national non-profit organization Science Expo – Canada’s largest youth-run non-profit dedicated to providing STEM outreach to high school students across the country.

Today, I witnessed the culmination of countless hours of blood, sweat, and tears for the last year by everyone on the Science Expo executive team – our fifth annual conference at the Ontario Science Centre. While the workshops on cutting-edge quantum computing, lectures on 3D printing, and keynote speeches by world-leaders in bio-security, evolutionary biology, and polymer chemistry made for an incredible day of STEM learning for everyone, the most rewarding part of the conference was hearing from delegates that our conference inspired them to pursue careers in STEM. I cannot thank my incredible team at Science Expo enough for making this day such a success.

I’ve worn many hats during my time at Science Expo – Speakers Coordinator, Marketing Director, Vice-President, President…and today, it’s time for me to make yet another transition. I will be joining the Board of Advisors as of the end of March. I am so proud of what everyone at Science Expo has achieved in the last few years, and I am so excited to see what we continue to do in the years to come.

We Move Beyond

This article says I “rocked modern science,” which is funny because there never was a rock concert. That would have been much more fun. It went more like this: after a long day of work in the basement, I feel asleep during an experiment and woke up to find that something interesting had happened.

Thanks to Noel and the Beyond team! It was a pleasure chatting with you.

Game Changers

I had a wonderful time chatting with my fellow Top 20 Under 20 alum Shane Feldman two nights ago for an interview in his new “Game Changers” series – a fantastic initiative to engage teachers in the world of student leadership! I am very excited to see the final project. Here’s a picture from the interview: