Connecting Art and Science

Are you an artist interested in broadening your portfolio of projects with impact? Are you a researcher who needs an image or artistic rendering of your model, method or process?

CoScien is an initiative supporting this aim to develop a pipeline that pairs motivated and curious art students to work with Cornell researchers. The driving force behind this is to make science more accessible and engaging through the use of more creative mediums. Go online to find an illustrator or to hone and engage your skills as an illustrator.

The benefits of this dynamic are numerous. From the researcher’s perspective, it saves time and effort required to learn programs like Adobe Illustrator or other design software. Additionally, by working closely with a member outside of the scientific community, the artist will act as an additional filter to make sure the content is comprehensible across diverse educational backgrounds.

For the art students, this is a unique opportunity to 1) diversify their professional portfolio and 2) help build the bridge between the scientific community and the general public. The altruism of the latter cannot be understated, as we are now in times where anti-intellectual and anti-science attitudes have entered the mainstream.

CoScien seeks interns with design and illustration experience who are interested in this project. One to three academic credits are available, depending on the weekly workload. Students could work side by side with graduate researchers and professors to work on a range of projects like graphical abstracts, learning modules, and extension content.

To apply, please email your resume to and complete the form ( If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out

CoScien stems from the Impact Academy, a student startup from Cornell eLab’s 2019 cohort that aims to help researchers improve their scientific research’s visibility and impact outside of academia and empower students and practitioners to apply the research to solve real-world problems. Since establishment last spring, more than 800 students from the US and China have participated in programs and learned research skills. Currently, the Impact Academy is expanding its own “impact” by transitioning into a resource that facilitates researchers’ science communication efforts through the CoScien initiative.

Shared by Mi Yan, graduate student in the Civic Ecology Lab in the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment.