UoM Physics Outreach
The School of Physics and Astonomy
Who are we?
University of Manchester Physics Outreach (UMPO) is a student organised science communication project which aims to engage the general public in various outreach activities. This could be visiting schools to deliver workshops about the different areas of physics, or going out into public spaces with our table top demonstration, explaining physics concepts to the general public and spreading the word of science!
With an ever growing team of over 100 volunteers, we work to challenge preconceptions about science as a field, break down barriers between communities in Manchester and promote studying physics as an option for young people from all backgrounds.
UMPO was officially founded in September 2015 by Luke Simpson and Joshua Hayes, under the supervision of Dr Emma Nichols. Josh and Luke had worked on a summer placement project for Emma, running a series of science busking events in Manchester city centre to meet numbers targets for a separate project. When a call for volunteers received 10 times as many responses as expected, including a large number of students expressing an interest to be involved in future projects, UMPO was founded.
Meet The Team
I'm Meg and I am a third year physics student at UoM. As the Senior Coordinator for UMPO I oversee the running of all our events and voluteers, liasing with our Public Engagement Manager Emma Nichols to expand and develop the UMPO project further. I have been apart of UMPO since my first year, creating and editing workshops before I took over my current position.
I think Science Communication is hugely important for not only reaching out to young people who could be the scientists of the future, but also changing the older generations view on what sciecnce is all about and encouraging people to get involved in whatever ways they can!
I'm Caitlin Green and I'm the general manager of UMPO. I see to the everyday running of the group, as well as keeping our Twitter page up to date with our latest news and events. I've been part of the UMPO senior team since my very first year and have overseen the recruitment of our newer team members. Now in my final year, I hope to utilise the experience I've gained from UMPO in my future carreer.
I'm Alex Andersson, a 3rd year Physics student and our Events Coordinator. My job is to liase with professionals in the science communication industry around the Greater Manchester area and to organise science events to get the public interested and involved in physics. This could consist of taking what we call "busking" equipment - table top physics demos - out to local markets in the community. I also organise our trip to Blue Dot festival every summer. My favourite piece of busking kit we have is a simple copper pipe demonstration that, despite consisting of just a pipe and a magnet, demonstrates how we generate the electricity that is so vital to our everyday lives!
My name is Jasmin and I am the school liaison for UMPO. My main role is contacting schools and booking our workshops and events for them. I wanted to join UMPO because I was really interested in science communication and have had a lot of positive experiences in working with children in the past. I think UMPO does really important work by promoting science among schools and the general public. I especially like our Girls in Physics and Engineering workshop, where we encourage girls to choose science subjects and have a more positive view on science in general.
I’m Mary, second year Physics with Theoretical Physics student here at the University of Manchester! I’m UMPO’s Recruitment Manager, which makes me in charge of all of our volunteers that we send to events! I make sure all of our volunteers have had the right training and support before an event, and I make sure they’re rewarded for their hard work!
I have been involved in UMPO since I started here, first as a volunteer myself and then as part of the senior team. I wish I’d had more exposure to exciting science when I was younger, and I’m very excited to be part of a team that will help to inspire the next generation!
Sup, I’m Henry and I’m the Science consultant – I maintain equipment and order new stuff, as well as the physics behind it all! Ever since my time back in Essex, living an hour away from Southend (pronounced ‘Saaf-end’), I had a great time helping to teach maths to younger years in my Sixth Form, and once I secured a physics place, my mind was set on doing something similar in University. Physics outreach has been an excellent opportunity for that! I love doing what I do with the rest of the team – in fact, my excessive time in the cupboards led to the nickname ‘cupboard goblin’ in the group chat, and it’s stuck ever since!
"Low quality pic, high quality pals" ~Alex Andersson 2018