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Whether we wear a lab coat or haven't seen a test tube since grade school, science is shaping all of our lives. And that means we all have science stories to tell. Every year, we host dozens of live shows all over the country, featuring all kinds of storytellers - researchers, doctors, and engineers of course, but also patients, poets, comedians, cops, and more. Some of our stories are heartbreaking, others are hilarious, but they're all true and all very personal. Welcome to The Story Collider!
 
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Part 1: In his early twenties, Jonathan Feakins goes above and beyond for his job as a West Nile virus mosquito technician Part 2: While working as a coral reef biologist in Panama in 1989, Nancy Knowlton and her young daughter are taken into the custody of the Panamanian military when the U.S. invades. Jonathan Feakins is just some nerd who has tr…
 
Beauty is often considered a superficial quality, but it has tremendous power over us. This week’s episode, produced in partnership with Grow by Ginkgo, features two stories adapted from Grow's 2020 print issue on Beauty. To read more, head over to growbyginkgo.com. Part 1: When Sudeep Agarwala becomes a synthetic biologist, he rediscovers a tradit…
 
This week, we conclude our final Stories of COVID-19 series with two stories about the lasting impacts of the pandemic. Both of these stories ask: Where do we go from here? Part 1: Months after Howard Lieberman contracts COVID-19 on a business trip in March 2020, he continues to suffer from symptoms of the virus. Part 2: When Monica Hickson drops o…
 
This week, we bring you two stories about the struggle to find balance during the COVID-19 pandemic, whether it’s as a scientist, a mother, or all of the above. Part 1: Psychiatrist Xiaosi Gu studies COVID-19’s impact on mental health, just as her own begins to deteriorate. Part 2: Stacey Bader Curry’s family and career are thriving — until the pan…
 
In our fourth installment of this series, love conquers all, even the obstacles presented by COVID-19. Part 1: Having planned to tie the knot in April 2020, Jared Waters finds himself separated from his fiancée by COVID lockdown instead. Part 2: The pandemic prompts Jamie Brickhouse and his partner of thirty years to consider getting married for th…
 
This week, we bring you two stories about negotiating life under the same roof during the COVID-19 pandemic. Part 1: When Gail Thomas moves in with her family during the pandemic, tensions brew between sisters. Part 2: The pandemic brings Wendy Bredhold and her ex-husband back together under the same roof for Thanksgiving. Gail is a writer/actor/st…
 
This week, in our final Stories of COVID-19 series, we bring you stories about managing the fear the pandemic introduced into our lives. Part 1: A disagreement about COVID-19 precautions drives a wedge between Archy Jamjun and his partner. Part 2: Julie Grace Immink tries to hide her fear from her young son when her husband is hospitalized for COVI…
 
This week, we introduce our third and final Stories of COVID-19 series, which will be airing for six weeks. We’ve decided to begin this series in the same way that we started our original Stories of COVID-19 series back in November 2020 — with New York City nurse Harvey Katz. Part 1: Harvey, a brand-new nurse, is thrust into the hectic environment …
 
For the final episode of our Human Nature series, we, appropriately, go back to our roots. Part 1: After a dangerous incident, Kalā Holiday begins to question his work as a tour guide in his ancestral land of Hawai’i. Part 2: Jeremy Richardson must reconcile his roots in coal country with his identity as a climate scientist. Kalā Holiday is a linea…
 
In this week’s installment of Human Nature, our storytellers find humility in the natural world. Part 1: After working in the Everglades, ecologist Stephen Smith expects his new gig in Cape Cod to be a piece of cake until one winter day in the sand dunes. Part 2: Henrique Bravo plans to travel the world in search of 30 endangered species, but after…
 
In this week’s installment of our Human Nature series, two storytellers find resilience on the high seas. Part 1: Tragedy strikes suddenly while Lindsay Cooper is in the field studying right whales. Part 2: Rachel Cassandra dreams of a life on the sea, but her captain makes unwelcome advances. Lindsay Cooper is an operations professional who starte…
 
This week, our Human Nature series continues with stories of hope — something that can sometimes be hard to find when it comes to our relationship with the planet. Part 1: A U.S. customs agent asks Canadian climate scientist Simon Donner an unexpected question. Part 2: As a child, Victoria Gee becomes determined to rescue the wildlife in her neighb…
 
This week, as our Human Nature series continues, we’re sharing two stories from scientists whose experiences in the field changed their perspectives. Part 1: As a young ecologist in Brazil's Mata Atlantica rainforest, Lauren Eckert struggles to find the monkeys she’s looking for. Part 2: As a marine biologist, Dyhia Belhabib was trained to view fis…
 
In this week’s installation of our Human Nature series, we’re sharing stories about times the natural world forces us to draw on our courage. Part 1: Dorothy Tovar faces her fear of nature when she embarks on a month-long safari trip in Botswana's Okavango Delta. Part 2: Caving with her research team in South Africa's Cradle of Humankind, Nompumele…
 
This week, we present two more stories in our Human Nature series, this time about the nature of earning our stripes. Part 1: An opportunity to chase a snake in Borneo gives Kasia Majewski a chance to find one in the most unexpected place. Part 2: Burying bones in her backyard for her archeology studies puts Edith Gonzalez becomes an eccentric neig…
 
Our new series, “Human Nature,” begins today! Over the next seven weeks, we’ll share stories centered around our relationship with the natural world. In today’s episode, we’ll explore how our storytellers’ experiences with nature — for good or for bad — helped them grow into the adults they are now. Part 1: Longing to explore nature, a tumultuous t…
 
This week, we’re presenting two stories about incarceration, and its intersections with science. Part 1: Looking to make an impact with science, Beverly Naigles and her fellow graduate students decide to teach a science class for incarcerated men at a nearby jail. Part 2: Incarcerated for robbery at the age of 21, Khalil Cumberbatch learns about th…
 
This week, we’re sharing two stories that were recorded before the pandemic, but that we’ve actually never shared on the podcast before. Both are from women in science, as our title suggests, and each one will bring us in to a different career journey in science. Part 1: While working at a whale research station in northern Maine, Brenna Sowder rec…
 
Today, we’re bring you two stories about feeling trapped -- whether it’s at the border, or in the aftermath of an acid spill. Both of these stories were recorded live at our recent Proton Prom event on June 3. Part 1: When Kimberly Chao begins her internship, she doesn’t expect to end up covered in acid! Part 2: When Saad Sarwana is detained at the…
 
Story Collider co-founder Ben Lillie joins us on the podcast today to discuss some of his favorite stories from the past 11 years, and also share one of his own. Part 1: Immunologist Sarah Schlesinger must try to save her mentor's life with his own work in cellular immunity. Other stories that Ben highlighted in this episode: Saad Sarwana, Anna Rot…
 
This week, in anticipation of our first annual Proton Prom on Thursday, June 3, we’re sharing stories from two of our featured storytellers! Champion storyteller Steve Zimmer and physicist and comedian Saad Sarwana have both appeared on our podcast in years past. Part 1: Against the odds, animal-loving kid Steve Zimmer attempts to rescue tadpoles i…
 
This week, our host, Erin Barker, is joined on the podcast by the hosts of our online live shows, Gastor Almonte and Paula Croxson, to introduce two fan-favorite stories from the past year of Story Collider’s online live shows. Part 1: Just as she’s doubting her identity as a scientist, Johana Goyes Vallejos is asked to give a presentation about he…
 
In celebration of The Story Collider's 11th birthday, we’re sharing two of our most loved stories from years past. Next week, tune in for two more stories that were highlights from this past year of online shows! Part 1: Lou Serico’s childhood dream of being a scientist is tested by working in a herpes lab for his PhD. Lou’s story originally aired …
 
In the final installment of this new five-part series of Stories of COVID-19, we present two stories that explore what it means to be a neighbor, or part of a community, during the pandemic. Part 1: Feeling more and more isolated as the pandemic continues, Brooklynite Adam Selbst finds purpose in a mutual aid project. Part 2: Separated from her own…
 
This week’s episode is all about masks -- the many varied reasons we have for wearing them, the uncertainty many of us felt around them in the early days of the pandemic, and most of all, the very real and intense emotion that often surrounds them. Part 1: In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, Sean Wellington is reluctant to wear a mask at fi…
 
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