Who Is Emily Calandrelli? The 'Bill Nye Saves The World' Correspondent Wants To Inspire Women In Science
When Bill Nye Saves the World premieres on Netflix April 21, it may look a little different than the beloved children's science show '90s kids grew up with. It will still have the same spirited, learning-driven core, but this time around, it's staying true to its new name. The spinoff aims to dispel anti-scientific claims, tackling timely, pressing topics like climate change, alternative medicine, and artificial intelligence. Also adding to its revamped image are a live studio audience and a slew of buzzy guest stars, and as you sift through its star-studded list of celebrity correspondents, you may be wondering: Who Is Emily Calandrelli?
Though a newcomer to the Bill Nye franchise, Calandrelli is a veteran science host in her own right. Since 2014, she's been a host and producer for Fox's Xploration Outer Space, in which she visits various NASA facilities to answer questions about our universe. According to her website, she's also a guest science writer and host for Discovery News, covers the space industry as a writer for TechCrunch, and gives talks about space exploration, scientific literacy, and equality as a professional public speaker. Her first children's book, Ada Lace: On the Case, is due for release on August 29.
And Calandrelli has an impressive resume to boot: She has an undergraduate degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from West Virginia University, plus a masters from MIT in both Aeronautics and Astronautics and Technology and Policy. She was even a visiting scholar at the Harvard NASA Tournament Lab, where she helped organizations solve technical challenges through the use of crowdsourcing.
When asked when she first realized she'd be a good fit for science television, Calandrelli told the Boston Globe she'd had a lightbulb moment while interning at NASA’s Glenn Research Center. She said:
"All of the interns had to do a presentation on what they learned that summer. The director of my program pulled me aside and asked if I had training in public speaking. He said I must be a senior in college. I was a rising sophomore. That was when I realized I might be good at explaining this stuff and bringing the information, for lack of a better phrase, down to earth."
She also told Nextshark that it's important to her to have female representation in the field. As she explained:
"I think when you’re younger watching TV, there’s just something about watching someone that looks a little bit like you talking about science, math and space exploration that makes it a little more relatable. It makes it more like, 'Oh, maybe that’s something that I could do.' It makes that thought come a little easier. Fifty-five percent of our viewers are female. That’s huge because my show is all about a male-dominated field, so we have 55 percent females watching a show about a male-dominated field. I think that speaks volumes to how we’re attracting more and more women to become interested in space."
That sounds like a cause viewers can get behind. Catch Calandrelli in action when Bill Nye Saves the World hits Netflix on Friday.