Doctor of Philosophy, Neuroscience, University of Michigan

Master of Science, Neuroscience, University of Michigan

Bachelor of Arts, Cognitive Sciences, Rice University

Elyse Aurbach

Public Engagement Lead

Why I Choose to Work at Academic Innovation

The people and the work, of course! I am inspired and energized by working on sticky, complex challenges with smart, creative people. It is wonderful to have the opportunity to reimagine engagement between the university and different publics in the 21st century – while collaborating with and learning from such a different, inspiring, and thought-provoking group of colleagues.

Current Roles/Previous Experience

As Public Engagement Lead, Elyse works to create opportunities for university and public partners can connect, collaborate, and learn from one another. Elyse leads strategy development for Academic Innovation’s part of the U-M Presidential strategic area of focus for faculty public engagement, conceptualizes and carries out projects in collaboration with faculty and staff, and develops opportunities for the campus community to come together and learn with and from one another.

Prior to joining the Academic Innovation team, Elyse pursued a double-life as a scientist studying the neurobiological underpinnings of major depression and leading a number of projects to improve science communication and public engagement. These included developing and teaching communication courses with Michigan Medicine, leading the Teach-Out “Stand Up for Science: Practical Approaches to Discussing Science that Matters,” and Co-Bossing with Nerd Nite Ann Arbor. She is also a co-founder and former director of RELATE, a science communication and public engagement organization. Elyse was a NSF Graduate Research Fellow and a finalist for the AAAS Early Career Award for Public Engagement with Science.

Ask Me to Learn About

brains; public engagement with science; science communication training; improv techniques, especially in pedagogical design; baking (especially technique-forward challenges like naturally leavened bread or laminated pastry); throwing pottery on the wheel; floral design; yoga

screencap of Sean Swider using ViewPoint tool