Last week USC hosted the NAE Grand Challenges Summit. For those of you who don’t know about the summit, it is a national event, which brings leading experts, scientists, and innovators together to discuss 14 grand engineering challenges. (Check out Evan’s blog for more on the Summit!)

Miles O’Brien , a former CNN correspondent, was the moderator for the event. Kudos to Miles! I thought he did a great job as moderator and threw in some good humor too. I especially appreciated The Big Bang Theory reference 😛

I was able to attend a couple of the panels on the last day. My favorite was the Communication panel.  The panel consisted of Henry Jenkins, Matthew Wald, Ali Velshi, and Jay Greene. It was cool to hear Ali Velshi speak since I’ve watched him on CNN before. He is the chief business correspondent for CNN.The panelists focused on the importance of communication in science and engineering.Each of them stressed the fact that engineers must be able to relay their ideas to non-engineers in a way that is relevant and easy to understand.

Henry Jenkins, a professor at USC, was the keynote speaker for this panel. He talked about how the expanding communication capacity of everyday people is changing the world of media. He feels it is the responsibility of every scientist to share his/her knowledge with the public, specifically through blogging (good thing i’m blogging now 🙂 ). Scientists and engineers cannot just rely on professional journalism to inform the public on what is happening in the science world.

Check out webcasts of all the panels at



Anastasia, Chemical Engineering (Biochemical), Class of 2012