Women in Science Network convenes around One Health, education, climate change, equity

Kelsey Dayle John and Meena Balgopal participating in a panel discussion at the Women in Science symposium

Kelsey Dayle John, left, of the University of Arizona, and Meena Balgopal, of the CSU Department of Biology, shared their perspectives on One Health topics during the opening panel discussion. All photos by John Eisele.

Colorado State University’s annual Women in Science Symposium brought together a breadth of people from different disciplines to discuss multicultural aspects of One Health on March 8. Participants shared academic expertise and personal stories of how they have lived or taught the inextricable links between animal, human and planet health.

It was the seventh such event organized by the Women in Science Network, a broad, cross-disciplinary campus organization that was founded a decade ago and has since expanded into Northern Colorado and beyond. The event coincided with International Women’s Day.

Topics discussed included: equine-human relationships, equitable science communication, climate change through a colonialist lens, and anti-Black racism in academia.

Invited speakers were prompted with the following questions: What inspired you to a career that speaks to and addresses the many One Health challenges we face? How do these challenges disproportionately impact people, environments, animals and social structures? What can be done at small and large scales to respond to these challenges?

Speaker Meena Balgopal, University Distinguished Teaching Scholar and a discipline-based educational researcher in the Department of Biology, shared her thoughts on how a One Health model is aligned with engaged learning.

“A multicultural one-health approach can increase relevance for learners, increase participation, increase environmental and scientific literacy, and increase collaborative problem-solving,” she said.

Also visiting campus throughout the day were students from Fort Collins Bauder Elementary School, who were treated to a day of activities introducing them to various aspects of CSU and science. Activity hosts included: Human-Animal Bond in Colorado, Sci On the Fly, DVM Teddy Bear Care, Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences’ Occupational Health and Safety, Balloon Stressors, How Your Body Works, CSU Bug Zoo, Brain Awareness Week, and Movement in Dance.

Learn more about the CSU Women in Science Network.

A volunteer dog from Human Animal Bond in Colorado with students from Bauder Elementary

Students from Bauder Elementary School pet a volunteer dog from Human-Animal Bond in Colorado, which is part of the CSU School of Social Work. 

Panelists participate in a discussion on climate change and equity issues

An afternoon panel discussion focused on issues of climate change, colonialism and science education. From left: Christina Reimer, primary care internal medicine physician and assistant dean of medical education at the University of Colorado School of Medicine at Colorado State University; Maddie Sofia, scientist and NPR journalist; Sheryl Magzamen, associate professor in the Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences at CSU; and Azmal Hossan, Ph.D. student in sociology and trainee in Interdisciplinary Training, Education and Research in Food-Energy-Water Systems at CSU. 

Melissa Burt at lectern

Melissa Burt, assistant professor in the Department of Atmospheric Science at CSU and assistant dean for diversity and inclusion in the Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering, moderated the panel discussion on climate change.

students from Bauder Elementary participating in a dance activity with CSU students

Bauder students participate in a dance activity with CSU students.

Students from Bauder Elementary participate in a mock vet clinic

Volunteers worked with Bauder students on mock veterinary clinic activities.