University of California, San Diego’s “Physics Girl” Wins National Competition

Dianna Cowern, outreach coordinator for the Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences at the University of California, San Diego, has become something of a YouTube sensation as “Physics Girl.” Her videos, which achieve thousands of hits on YouTube, are aimed at getting more girls interested in science at a young ago.

For her efforts Cowern was awarded the top prize in the Flame Challenge by the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University. The competition was created by Alan Alda and each year he proposes a question that will be interesting to young learners. The first year, the question was “What is flame?” This year, Cowern was awarded for her video answering the question, “What is color?” Cowern was presented with the award at the World Science Center in New York City.

In addition to her videos, Cowern sets up exhibits and demonstrations at science fairs, volunteers at the university’s Young Physicists Program and performs science education outreach at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center.

Cowern is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Before joining the staff at the University of San Diego, she worked at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and then was a software engineer for General Election.

Below is the winning video.

Filed Under: Awards


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