What do you do?
At TCF, I work as a teacher trainer for secondary physics & mathematics teachers. I develop training for teachers and school Principals. During the closure of schools due to COVID-19, I am working an edutainment magazine, called 'Ilm Ka Angan (The Learning Courtyard)' under the distance learning & support project at TCF. I lead the secondary Science and Mathematics segments of the magazine which caters to thousands of students across Pakistan.
At Science Fuse, I co-lead the project called 'Science Baithak'. Science Baithak’ which translates into ‘a place where people gather for a scientific conversation’ is aimed to be a meeting point of ideas which merges science with other disciplines such as arts, storytelling, language, dramatics and more, to create engaging informal learning experiences for children and young people. Apart from ideas, 'Science Baithak' also aims to serve as a platform which brings together experts working within diverse scientific and academic fields.
Why did you choose this field?
Most people do not believe me when I tell them that I decided to pursue a career in physics as early as when I was in grade 10.
I was an average student during most of my school life, had poor writing skills, and struggled with most of the descriptive subjects like history, biology, languages and chemistry. So, I found my refuge in numbers; yes, math became my ultimate savior. I still remember that in grade 7 when I was first introduced to astronomy in a physics class, I actually went home and opened my books; this marked the beginning of my fascination towards physics Later during my school life, I started looking for options where I could learn more about it and explore the mysteries of the universe. It was during this time that i started working hard for my career. I became a better student, not because my goal was to score excellent grades but because I had fallen in love with nature and its secrets. Hence,partly in order to satisfy my inquisitiveness and partly to broaden the horizon of my knowledge, I started studying online on open coursework platforms and joined a few study groups online. By the end of my high school, I was pretty sure that I wanted to be a physicist. Fast forward a few years, I graduated as a physics major from one of the most reputed universities of my city.
During my university life, I witnessed a huge lack of interest and exposure among people, which made me frustrated and I wanted to do something for it. I started looking for options through which I could play my part in changing this trend of our society. I volunteered, worked for different science societies and organizations. This eventually led me to become a Science Communicator.
Today, I am a Science Communicator, I Teacher Trainer and an aspiring Physicist.
What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?
I participated in numerous fully funded summer schools and short programs during my undergrad and professional life. At that stage I got to know that such opportunities exist for school students as well. I wish I had known about such opportunities when I was in school.
Why do you love working in STEM?
I love physics and cosmology! And I thoroughly enjoy sharing my knowledge with others. Hence, I absolutely love the work that I do, both as a Teacher Trainer and a Science Communicator!
Best advice for next generation?
Be curious and observant. Question everything that happens around you and never let your limitations define you. And once you decide to pursue a career in STEM, stay passionate and committed to it, regardless of what others tell you to be. I honestly don’t consider myself as a very wise person, but one thing which I have learned in life is that if you are honest, work hard and are ready to take a few risks in life, there is no goal that you cannot achieve and no dream that you cannot live!
Inspo quote / fun fact / role model
"Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. And however difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at.
It matters that you don't just give up.”
― Stephen Hawking