Solar Heliospheric and INterplanetary Environment (SHINE) Students – Student Representatives' Perspectives
Wednesday, 17 December 2014
The SHINE workshop is an annual meeting of solar and heliospheric scientists which, in addition to aiming to improve understanding of solar disturbances and their propagation to, and effect, on the Earth (shinecon.org), is dedicated to actively supporting students. This dedication is substantiated in part through the National Science Foundation (NSF) providing funding for student attendance to the workshop, which enables student participation. Another example of SHINE's commitment to its student members is the incorporation of a Student Day prior to the workshop since 2003, entirely organized and run by two student representatives. While there are variations in format from year to year, Student Day consists of tutorials and research talks exclusively by student volunteers to an audience of only students. The day is intended to provide a low-stress environment for students to learn about the various topics addressed during the workshop, to ask questions freely, and to engage in scientific discussion with other students which hopefully is a catalyst for collaboration. As a result of positive experiences, over the past decade student attendance and participation in the workshop have increased. At the SHINE 2014 workshop, nearly a third of attendees were students. SHINE student visibility has increased over the years, with student posters being advertised at breakfast, inclusion of a student day summary by the student representatives during a plenary session, and continued support from the steering committee. Students are also promoting a broader impact of SHINE sciences via increased social media presence. From a student representative's perspective, SHINE has built and fostered a healthy student community and encourages students to engage in shaping the future of the field.