Episode 21: Ecology During an Eclipse

Hello everyone! Today we’re giving you a special sneak peak into our new podcast that we’re working on called In the Elements. We’re collaborating with Dakota from The Weather Junkies and Becky to bring you interesting stories about science through a human lens. Definitely check it out if you’re interested in hearing about weather, ecology, and some exciting guests.

This week we’re bringing you our bit of an episode about the eclipse that happened in August. Cari was in Ohio at Cuyahoga Valley National Park and Caitlin was all the way over in a cow pasture in the Mark Twain National Forest in Missouri (a great spot to watch the eclipse because no one else was there).

You can find our episodes over here on Apple Podcasts. Also, check us out on Twitter @ElementsPod. But as always, you can let us know what you think of this episode here! We love to hear your feedback!

Finally, we put this in the end of our podcast, but we wanted to say it here, if you’re interested in donating some money to the people and animals feeling the impact of hurricane Harvey and Irma please do. They can really use your help. Just make sure you’re donating to a reputable group so your money actually makes an impact.

You can always donate to the Red Cross, but we also want to encourage you to think about donating to the SPCA’s of Texas and Florida or any other animal shelters, all of which could really use your help. They’re taking in a lot of lost/abandon pets and some even help injured wildlife.



❤ Cari and Caitlin

Episode 20: Caitlin’s Job

This is a quick update for you all about the status of Caitlin’s job and the new directions of the podcast. First, Caitlin got a job at The Morton Arboretum! She is a science communication intern championing the efforts of restoring woodlands and taking advantage of the benefits of urban forests. If you want to know more definitely check out the podcast.

Also we some exciting news! As we approach the year anniversary of our first Bugs&Stuff episode we will be switching our trajectory to include more discussions about bugs and other cool science. We’re no longer in academia, so we won’t have as many experiences within that realm anymore. But we’ll always be talking about outreach, science communication, and how to get more involved in both because they are our loves. If you have anythings else you’d like us to talk about please let us know!

Finally, we have some super exciting news. We have collaborated with the meteorologists over at Weather Ready Or Not and will be helping with a new podcast called In the Elements. Check it out if you want to hear the human stories behind the science! We’ve been working really hard on episodes and are excited for you to hear them! Next week (the week of Sept. 11th) three episodes will be released for In The Elements. One will be our own ecology episode, another a more natural disaster episode, and finally, of course, a combined episode about the solar eclipse! Be sure to be on the look out and we’ll post them in a blog post as well.

We’ll see you. We love you. Goodbye!

Episode 19: What’s the quality of your water?

Do you know how your water is doing? Do you buy plastic water bottles because your worried about water quality or your tap water doesn’t taste good? Well this is the podcast for you. Today we have another exciting guest for you! Andrew Lombardo is a listener who reached out to us because he wanted to get more into science communication. He works with water quality technology where he has been working with water quality technology throughout his career, and he gave us a lot of insight into how we can become more informed about water quality.

With the Flint water crisis, many people may be concerned about their water. While Andrew said that the U.S. usually does a pretty good job ensuring the quality of water, it’s never bad to check on your water. Especially since after it leaves the treatment site, the water has to travel through many pipes which may be contaminated.

The EPA is a great place to start if you want to learn more about water quality. Here is a good link if you’d like to find out how to get your water tested. Depending on your municipality, you may be able to get your water tested for free. Otherwise, it may cost you a small fee.

If you do find that your water quality is an issue or you want to eliminate some of the bad flavor in your water, you can check out these sites for looking for a certified filter.




Getting your water tested and understanding what disinfectant is used by your municipality can help you get the right filter. After you do this you could save a lot of money, if you are always buying plastic water bottles. Did you know that the bottled water can cost you $346 dollars a year according to consumer reports if you buy a bottle every day? Filling up a reusable water bottle once a day would only cost you an average of 48 cents for the WHOLE year! Other than saving money, using a reusable water bottle will help limit the amount of single use plastic that is used all over the world. Which helps our world be a little cleaner.

Anyway, if you’d like to get in touch with Andrew here are a few of his links.


His website



Episode 18: Junior Academy of AMAZING

Hi everyone and welcome to episode 18. We can’t believe that we’re only 2 episodes away from 20! Today we are bringing you a great interview with, Smiti Shah, a member of the Junior Academy of the Global STEM Alliance.

We’re highlighting the Junior Academy this week because Cari has been working with them over the past year, and it is a great way for high school students to get a head start in research. Students are introduced to one another from around the world. They then get to work with a mentor on a STEM project with all of those people.

The goal of the Junior Academy is to work in groups to help solve problems through innovation. Some notable projects have focused on helping underserved communities have access to clean water and reducing fruit spoilage. While talking to Smiti, it amazed me how talented and bright these students were. It really made me excited about the future to know that there are this brilliant students, the innovators of tomorrow all over the globe.

I wish I had the chance to do something like this growing up, so I strongly encourage any of you to talk about this with the young scientists in your life. OR if your currently a scientist, and have some free time to give to students, sign up to be a mentor or an expert. Cari’s experience has been incredibly rewarding.

So check it out!

Junior Academy Website

Until next time sweet listeners! We love you, we’ll see you, goodbye!

Episode 17: Women in STEM

Hey there everyone. We hope you enjoyed our double feature two weeks ago. Today we are bringing you along to talk about women in STEM. It’s a topic near to our heart because after all we are women in STEM.

We cover a variety of topics in this episode, but a couple of events really spurred on our need to talk about this topic. First, there was the whole thing on Twitter about the Benefit makeup add. Here is one Twitter post that I think counters that add quite nicely.

This add really infuriates me because it makes it seem like young girls have to choose between if they want beauty or brains, when in reality you can have both. Weather or not you wear makeup should have no effect on school or how nerdy you are.

Second, this article came out and analyzes the experiences of women, with a focus of women of color, in the workplace. Some of their findings were shocking. For example, 40% of women of color reported feeling unsafe in their workplace. UNSAFE. That’s not uncomfortable or made to feel lesser in their abilities, but they felt threatened. What’s worse is these feelings often made women miss out of career building opportunities.

What Cari and I discuss during this episode is the importance of bringing together all groups when discussing these issues. While it’s important to have women and other minorities discuss their issues together, it’s also helpful to discuss these experiences with a broader group. After all, these issues not only bring down the people directly involved. If individuals feel unsafe within an environment they are more likely to leave that environment. This leads to less diversity within workplaces and fewer great minds working together to solve the world’s problems.

So let’s try to get together to concur these issues for women and minorities so that we can ultimately build a better more understanding world!

Here’s the second article we talked about.

Check out Emily Calandrelli here! And her show’s here!

Check out Emily Graslie too! And her show The Brain Scoop!

Please take a moment to review us on Apple Podcasts and take our survey!

Episode 16: Updates, interviews, outreach, and more!

Join us for this multi-subject episode! We talk a little bit about what we’ve been doing lately, which includes interview advice, outreach advice, and a little bit about what its like being a lady in STEM.

Caitlin talks about the amazing interviews she’s been having lately, so everyone PLEASE cross your fingers for her! I’ll talk about my time in Atlanta teaching at a cub scout camp! I also give a little advice about planning for a day camp like that one. Moving on, we talk a little bit about the sexism I experienced while there because it was the first time I experienced something like that directly. We know that we were lucky to only be facing this now. Some ladies experience sexism daily in STEM fields. So, its important to talk about. I also ramble excitedly about the amazing nature centers in southern Florida. We hope you enjoy this update!

There’s also still time to take our survey! Click here and we will forever love you!

P.S. sincerest apologies for my cold throughout this episode! Oh and in case you were wondering, Caitlin caught her first lightning bug after we recorded this episode!

Updates on the hotdog-sandwich debate: most are saying no, a hotdog is not a sandwich for various reasons. Some say it’s because it’s on a bun, not sandwich bread. Others say it’s because the bun is not in two parts. And a few have said it’s because the hotdog is a log of meat and not sliced meat. What’s your opinion?



The adorable scene put up at the cub scout camp that was absolutely cute enough to share!


The amazing displays at Biscayne National Park that I loved!


A very cool nature center in the keys! This is the one with the amazing light up map I was talking about!


Me petting a nurse shark at the Key West Aquarium (disclaimer: I was also worried about her carrying around the shark out of water, but she assured me he would be okay).


The hospital room in The Turtle Hospital.


Turtle who have Bubble Butt Syndrome. You can see the added weight very clearly on the turtle to the left.


This turtle, named Chuck Norris, has been through a lot, including a boat strike and a shark attack!


Other turtles in the hospital for various reasons.


Here’s a turtle with many fibropapillomas on the face, neck, and front flippers.


Awesome links from this podcast:

Special shout out to Cyber Squid Radio’s Logan who made us a new jingle! You can also find them about Sound Cloud. It’s a podcast about science news and science in pop culture!

Biscayne National Park

The Turtle Hospital

Femmes of STEM! A podcast about the wonderful ladies in STEM that are unfortunately often forgotten.



Episode 15: DOUBLE FEATURE! Interviews with real life people

Hello dear listeners! We know we’ve been missing for a few weeks, but we are trying to make up for that now. Today we have a double feature podcast for you all with interviews from some lovely people to help you understand the ins and outs of being a scientist and changing careers/getting your first career. Whether you want to pursue academia or you’re taking a different path these episodes will hopefully bring your some advise.

Part 1

Part 2

Below I have also posted the information about the Pelini Lab and Shannon as well as Julie’s instagram (she takes some great photos).

Pelini Lab Website 

Shannon’s Twitter

Shannon’s BGSU webpage

Julie’s Instagram

Please take a second to take our survey too! We’ve got some ideas that we want to run by you all! We appreciate your time and answers!