The Center for Communicating Science:

The art of connecting across difference

The Center for Communicating Science  creates and supports opportunities for scientists, scholars, health professionals, and others to develop their abilities to communicate and connect. Our differences, whether they be racial, cultural, religious, education level, academic discipline, or research specialty, can divide us. But such differences also enrich our lives, broaden our perspectives, and strengthen our collaborations. Arts tools and practices can be used to bridge these divisions, helping participants  to learn to listen deeply, interact personally, directly, spontaneously, and responsively, and express themselves vividly. It is our intention to deepen human interaction, strengthen empathy and awareness of others, and develop collaborative team and leadership capacities in students, faculty, and industry and community partners.

A message from Alan Alda on the opening of the Center: "I'm delighted to know that the founding of the Center for Communicating Science at Virginia Tech is inspired by the work we do at the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University. It's my dream that innovative techniques for teaching communication will make the relationship between science and the public one that's close, warm, and exciting. I congratulate Virginia Tech as it strikes out on that path."


This is the Center's logo

VT hosts 24 German Fulbright Fellows

 "Communicating Science: Communication, Collaboration, and Connection Across Differences and Disciplines" is the focus of a German Fulbright summer institute on campus that began July 22 and runs through August 12. Student participants are recording their impressions and experiences in a group blog.

Virginia Tech's Center for

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Upcoming Events

"How to build trust," social ecologist Marc Stern

August 28, 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Rising Silo Brewery, 2351 Glade Road, Blacksburg

Twenty-four undergraduate students from Germany will be at Virginia Tech July 23-August 12, enrolled in "Communicating Science: Communication, Collaboration, and Connection Across Differences and Disciplines." 

Center director Patty Raun will give the keynote address at the national conference of the Educational Theatre Association, September 15-18, Nashville. Conference theme: "The Rise of Steam: Real World Theatre Education for the 21st Century."

Center associate director Carrie Kroehler will facilitate an interactive session at the Cultivating Ensembles in STEM Education and Research (CESTEMER) conference, September 15-17, Chicago.

Recent Events

Rising Silo Brewery

2351 Glade Road, Blacksburg

May 6, 1:00pm-2:30pm. 

More information here.

Mid-Atlantic regional conference of the American Society for Cell Biology, Intro to Improv workshop

May 1

National Institutes of Health, Bethesda

Rising Silo Brewery

2351 Glade Road, Blacksburg

April 24, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. 

More information here.

Introduction to Improvisation for Scientists workshop for Virginia Tech chemistry undergraduate and graduate students. 

April 20, 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.

Center Director Patty Raun has been invited to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point for a residency to lead workshops in communicating across difference, leadership, empathy, and connection.

April 12, 13, 14

What is molecular paleontology?

Presentation by Caitlin Colleary

 5:30-6:30 p.m., April 10, 2017

Improvisational games that help us learn to risk,  fail, and risk again.

"Introduction to ICAT" students

April 10, 2 p.m.