Scientists are trying to ditch the stereotypes by acting out their theses through dance.  The competition run by the American Association for the Advancement of Science was designed to showcase the lighter side of an often “stuff, lab-bound” field.  The contest was open to any Ph.D. students in any scientific field.  Those entering the Dance Your Ph.D. contest were asked to choreograph a dance to represent their thesis.

Amongst the winners announced on November 20th was Sue Lynn Lau from the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, Australia. Lau used a mixture of ballet and dance party moves to act out her research, “The role of vitamin D in beta-cell function thesis.” In one part of the dance, she appears as the Sugarplum Fairy to deliver marshmallow glucose to three beta cell dancers. The four winners will now work together with professional choreographers to produce a full-length spectacular for the AAAS Annual Meeting in Chicago in February 2009.

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