Having made the switch from scientist to science writer, I know what it’s like to explore the so-called “alternative” careers in science—though more and more, people are starting to recognize these are pathways with just as much value as the traditional research career. I have spoken at several different career symposia (see list below). 

View my presentation about my career and science writing tips at Brown University in 2016:

I typically talk about:

1) What a science writer does and what career options are in this field (see resources below)

2) My own personal journey and how I found the right profession for me

3) A handful of writing tips

I can, of course, tailor my presentation to the audience.

Career Talks

Career Development Lunch, 16th International Congress on Toxoplasmosis and Toxoplasma gondii Research, Riverside, California, May 23, 2022.

Graduate student science communication class, Stanford University, July 23, 2021.

Curious Science Writers, Americans for Medical Progress, July 15, 2021.

Postdoc career mentoring program, Department of Neuroscience, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, November 11, 2020.

Science Communication in English, Chemitz University of Technology, July 7, 2020.

Beyond Academia Conference, University of California, Santa Barbara, February 28, 2020.

Graduate School Fundamentals: Introduction to Graduate Studies in the Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego, December 5, 2017; December 4, 2018; November 5, 2019.

Careers in Scientific and Technical Publishing Panel, Postdoctoral & Graduate Student Professional Development, University of California, Los Angeles, November 17, 2016.

Coffee Break Science: Communicating Science to Society, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, September 24, 2016.

Non-RI Opportunities Workshop, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California, Irvine, May 26, 2016.

Professional Pathways Fundamentals Course, Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego, April 20, 2011; May 9, 2012; April 13, 2016.

Science Education & Outreach Panel, Postdoctoral & Graduate Student Professional Development, University of California, Los Angeles, May 14, 2015.

Alternative Careers in Science and Engineering, Neuroscience Graduate Program, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, June 17, 2014.

Postdoc association, Rocky Mountain Laboratories, Hamilton, Montana, September 12, 2013.

Career Discovery Lunch Series, City of Hope Beckman Research Institute, Duarte, California, August 10, 2012.

Genomics Building Career Day, University of California, Riverside, May 20, 2011.

Program for Excellence in Education & Research in the Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, November 20, 2008; November 18, 2010.

Science Writing and “Alternative” Careers Resources

National Association of Science Writers

Council for the Advancement of Science Writing

The Open Notebook



The Craft of Science Writing

The Science Writers’ Handbook

Internships, Workshops & Meetings

World Federation of Science Journalists

Santa Fe Science Writing Workshop

AAAS Mass Media Science & Engineering Fellows Program


“Alternative” Careers Books

Alternative Careers in Science: Leaving the Ivory Tower

Guide to Nontraditional Careers in Science: A Resource Guide for Pursuing a Non-Traditional Path

© Amber Dance 2016