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CFMU Spotlight: Let’s Talk Science

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CFMU Spotlight is a feature that aims to highlight and raise interest in some of CFMU’s radio programs. This week we are covering CFMU Inertia, a science program that airs Tuesdays at 12:00PM. We reached out to the show’s two hosts, Greg and Ratika to ask them about the show.

What is CFMU Inertia all about, for those who don’t know?

Greg: So essentially, we are brought to you by the SRA science and McMaster Science Society. We usually start off the show with news and updates, so events that are coming up, guidelines, ASF updates for example, or presidential election updates, just things that are going on that people may be interested in.

Ratika: Yeah, so we are a science radio show but we try to cater to every single student. We try to cater to students that aren’t in science as well, we talk about cool exciting news that are happening in science, we try to get interviews with students who are doing research or who are interested in the things we’re talking about and are just really passionate, and want to get their opinions heard. It’s a way for the science community to come together and –

Greg: Just branch out, and reach a lot of students.

What are your main goals with Inertia? Is there anything you really wanted this show to do?

Greg: I think instead of aiming to do something specific, if you are passionate about something that just kind of comes with it. So if you really love what you’re doing, that’s the main goal for me at least, if you love what you’re doing people are going to sense that you really enjoy it and they’re going to start listening to the show. Which would bring me to the point that promo, and getting Inertia to ‘blow up’, and having people know about Inertia is one of the goals I had for us this year.

Ratika: Yeah definitely, I one hundred percent agree, I feel that Inertia is such a good way to bring students together and kind of just keep them in the loop about what’s happening not only at Mac but also around the world with science. So one of our major goals was to just have more people know about it and interested in it.

What got you two interested in science in the first place, and what field are you particularly interested in?

Ratika: Well for me it’s kind of a funny story, in high school I didn’t know what I wanted to go into when I came into university. But after looking – I’m currently in Medical Radiation Sciences, which is a program where you deal with ultrasound, x-rays and that kind of thing, so I’d say that’s the field of science that I’m interested in. That’s what got me into my program in the first place and I’m really glad that I ended up choosing it because I love it.

Greg: I’ve kind of been all over the map. When I was a kid, six or seven, for some reason my Mom has videos of me wanting to be a pharmacist. I’m surprised I even knew what that word was at that point, and for ten years I was just sold on being a pharmacist. I was like “okay, I’ll go to Mac life sci, then I’ll branch out to biochem or something,” and then when I got here I was thinking dentistry and right now I’m set on chiropractic, so that’s essentially where I’m at now.

How do you try to make this show more accessible to non-science students?

Greg: Well it’s broadcast through the website and we have it on SoundCloud as well, and also the radio, so there’s three avenues for people to listen to it. The content as well isn’t just science-related.

Ratika: And we try to put everything into layman’s terms, we don’t want to use any high-tech science vocabulary or anything that people might not understand. It’s just something that anyone who tuned in to the radio could be interested in.

How do you decide which topics to cover for each episode?

Greg: It’s arbitrary.

Ratika: Yeah, so it’s just basically deciding depending on what’s happening in science at that moment, and we do have a wonderful research team who puts together articles for us every week that we could talk about, so it’s what they’re passionate about as well. And we like to take suggestions from the students in science because in the end they’re the ones who are listening to it so we don’t want to talk about just what we’re interested in, we want to talk about what everyone will be interested in.

Greg: Absolutely, we want to appeal to everyone, and like Ratika mentioned our research team has put in a lot of effort and they kind of collect things that are relevant to what’s going on, so for example over Christmas they would bring up Christmas related articles or cool things in science that related to Christmas, just with the flow of the season.

What are your favourite parts of working on this show?

Ratika: My favourite part is definitely just being in the studio and recording with Greg, like honestly he’s the best co-host, and the way that we work off of each other and bounce ideas off of each other I think is super cool, and I just really enjoy getting to do that. I feel really lucky that we got the chance to do this for sure.

Greg: I think just having fun with it is the main thing, and Ratika said I was good but I think she’s a lot better to work with because she’s so, not passive, but she lets me kind of rant sometimes which makes me feel better, and she comments on it too. One of the big things I noticed was that going from the beginning of the year when we’d have to script our things and it was really, not forced, but it seemed like it wasn’t natural, and now it just kind of flows and it comes out natural and we can do things faster and just have fun with it.

Any final comments, just to encourage people to listen?

Greg: Yeah, absolutely, I think we’re funny.

Ratika: Yeah I would agree, we make some jokes, I think we’re pretty cool people.

Greg: I make some bad jokes, if you like bad jokes you can listen to me.

Ratika: But yeah, more seriously, if you are interested in science our show like we said isn’t just about science for science students, it’s about science for the general community, and we’re hoping that through our show people can get more interested in science even if they’re not studying it.

Greg: Absolutely, re-tweet.

Check out Inertia’s video promo below:

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