STEAM’s beauty is the ability to approach a problem through an innovative perspective drawing from many disciplines. Engineering can allow for new avenues in music and art. Math can fuel technology. In this interdisciplinary way we can approach problems with solutions through each of the elements of STEAM with our own unique perspectives and passions.
Esperanza Spalding, a Grammy Award-winning jazz musician and composer, is collaborating with neuroscientists to develop music that can benefit one’s health. She started labs around the country to develop this music by bringing people across disciplines together. Spalding is a STEAM heroine using art and music to approach science and medicine in a way that is increasingly accessible to all.
Balaram Khamari, a doctoral microbiology student, arranges cultured bacteria to create art pieces to show the inseparable, interconnectedness between art and science. The Microbial Peacock also seeks to spread cultural awareness by highlighting the national bird of India. When we view the world’s challenges through an interdisciplinary lens, innovative solutions can be robust and more readily materialized.
Over the past few months, I have been honored to participate in the Schmidt Future’s Rise Challenge. In addition to developing an interdisciplinary platform that provides multimedia content to spread brain injury awareness to kids, I have been fortunate to be a part of a global Discord community with fellow Rise Challengers, where there is a channel dedicated to interdisciplinary perspectives. This space allows for the collaboration that can fuel an interdisciplinary world. In building a better future together we can learn and draw from each other’s perspectives, backgrounds, and disciplines to create more effective, innovative solutions.
During this next week, I encourage you to collaborate and ask someone about their interests. If what they share is not something you have explored before then you have expanded upon your perspective that you can use to approach problems in the future. We can seek to grow an interdisciplinary perspective every day by embracing every opportunity to learn.
Co-Director of the Student Ambassador Program
BASIS Tucson North, Arizona