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Harvard Brain Science Initiative Feature

Read this article on the Harvard Brain Science Initiative’s site here.

Science Rehashed: When Change is Possible

By Chiara Maffei

“The world only exists in your eyes. You can make it as big or as small as you want.” - Scott Francis Fitzgerald

Life is all about perspective. However, as human beings, we tend to become comfortable in our closer surroundings, and we often lose perspective. As scientists in an industrialized country, we are all guilty of taking our many privileges for granted, including having unlimited access to scientific papers and many other institutional resources. While doing this, we forget about the many talented individuals from all around the world who struggle to gain access to these valuable resources.

Luckily, we can gain perspective through experience. Mehdi Jorfi, Ph.D., a neuroscientist and bioengineer at Mass General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, knew what it means to grow up in a neighborhood with limited scientific resources and how it can be a barrier for younger generations to pursue science. His background made his perspective on science accessibility unique from scientists who had never experienced difficulty accessing scientific information, and this perspective shaped Mehdi’s drive to pursue a new reality for scientific accessibility. For Mehdi, this new reality took shape as Science Rehashed, a podcast dedicated to making science free and easily accessible for anyone with an internet connection. Founded in August 2019 by Mehdi Jorfi and his colleague Shen Ning, a MD/PhD student at the Boston University School of Medicine, Science Rehashed is on a mission to help disseminate, understand, support, and inspire science and scientists all around the world. The team is trying to achieve this overarching goal by highlighting science through a number of series: i) Rehashing Science focuses on the innovation, covering recently published discoveries in life sciences and bioengineering; ii) Meet the Legend focuses on the people, introducing the most recognized pioneers of different scientific and engineering fields; iii) 360° Perspective focuses on the impact, providing a broad and comprehensive view of disease, modality, or subfield; and iv) Wonder WomXn in Science and Engineering (WWiSE) focuses on increasing the visibility of women leaders in STEM fields, hoping to highlight inspiring career journeys and to mitigate the gender gap.

A year after its conception, Science Rehashed has grown to 13 team members and 7 ambassadors, produced 20 episodes, hosted 31 leading experts in the fields of medicine and biological sciences, reached people across 75 countries, and discussed important scientific discoveries for a total of more than 480 minutes. The podcast has been recognized through the Boston University Venture Innovation Pathway and elected as one of the five finalists for the 2020 Life Sciences & Healthcare Nonprofit Pitch Challenge. Not bad for a one-year-old mission! This success would not have been possible without the dedication of the talented team, the enthusiasm and brilliance of the guest scientists, and the support from all the listeners. The podcast’s reach has been greatly enhanced by the efforts of the ambassadors, who have been committed to spreading awareness about Science Rehashed and its important mission.

If it is true that “A good beginning is half the battle” (and we hope it is), Science Rehashed started it off right. For the year to come, the podcast aims to reach more listeners across the U.S. and abroad, to expand their use of social media platforms to include video content, and to continue to inspire and guide students in their scientific journeys. If the mission of Science Rehashed resonates with you, join in by becoming a team member or ambassador through the Science Rehashed website.

Chiara Maffei, PhD is a writer for Science Rehashed. “Being a writer for Science Rehashed means to inspire and be inspired.” She is Postdoctoral Research Fellow, working on mapping the connections of the human brain at the Laboratory for NeuroImaging of Coma and Consciousness (NICC) & Laboratory for Computational Neuroimaging (LCN) at the Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Image created by Emma Brand, Creative Director of Science Rehashed

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