The current science communication officer coordinates and facilitates the MTS events and provides support to the scientists in preparing and planning for the day.
An initial face-to-face meeting is used to gauge the scientist’s level of experience with public engagement and thus how much support they need. A checklist is also provided to help effectively devise and develop a suitable activity, for example things, ‘prior to the event’, including writing a risk assessment, providing a public liability insurance certificate, ensuring enough Criminal Records Bureau checked persons are present, number of tables, the type of space needed for the activity; things to remember ‘on the day’; and also a list of general starting ideas for activities; ‘build something, show some fancy equipment, solve a puzzle, contribute to the bigger picture’ etc.
The outcome of the event depends on the actual content of the engagement activity but include gaining a better understanding of, insight into and inspiration for a particular STEM subject. Very hands on sessions may also result in a member of the public gaining new skills.