Q+A with Science Presentation Coordinator
AMADEO ENRIQUEZ BALLESTRO
What do you love about your job?
The best part of my job is meeting heaps of people and working with the new generations, with their amazing energy and vitality. The world is full of problems, but there are always solutions for any problem, and in my job as a science communicator, that is the best part. I get to think about how science can help us solve the problems we have in our society today, from climate change to obesity.
A more scientifically literate society is a better society, no matter what you do in life, whether it is art, music, politics or cooking, science is always there to help. Sending that message to the new generations and engaging in good conversations about how science can allow us to live better is the best part of my job, and delivering really cool science demos is part of it all too! Below is a water volcano erupting in Nelson’s Nayland College a couple of weeks ago.
What’s your favourite gallery and why?
Taking Tūhura out of the list as I don’t think this is a gallery as much as it is an amazing science centre, my favourite gallery has to be Southern Lands, Southern People. It is full of rocks, which have been my passion since I was little. I came to New Zealand from Spain to study geology, and it didn’t take long for me to start coming to Otago Museum to enjoy the amazing collection of fossils on display, from the biggest fossil in New Zealand (the plesiosaur), to the ancient penguins and dolphins that once swam around right where we are today. Southern Lands, Southern People is full of amazing stories from a time when the world was tropical, and some amazing animals and plants enjoyed a land very different to the one we live in today.
If you could make any collection item come to life, what would it be and why?
With night at the Museum in mind, there are lots of things I would like to bring to life! But I’m going to choose the moa now. I’d love to see it walk, and run, and to see its behaviour around other animals and also around other moas! I’d like to see a group of moas run free around the Museum interacting with visitors and each other. Let’s bring the moa back!
If you were locked in the Museum overnight, what would you do?
With all the sleepover groups we run this has happened to me before, so I would do more of the things we do when we stay the night at the Museum: I would enjoy the galleries at night, and the tropical forest! And then have a good sleep in some cool place. The key to a good night's sleep is to choose a place in which you wont be woken up during the night. At the Museum, that has to be far from the Atrium, as the cleaners come in really early… My sleeping choice would be in the light area of Tūhura, where I could experiment with light just before going to sleep!
Amadeo Enriquez Ballestro
Science Presentation Coordinator