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Elise Cutts


I'm one of those former researchers who realized that writing about science is a lot more fun than doing it. Somewhere between a microbiologist and Earth scientist by training, I recently graduated with a M.S. in Earth Science from MIT, where I studied bacterial slimes that influence fossilization. Before MIT, I earned my B.S. in Geobiology at Caltech before hopping across the Atlantic for a Fulbright at the University of Southern Denmark. 

My years in research were an ongoing tug-of-war between my genuine love of science and my stubbornly persistent interests in writing and language. I lead Caltech's Yearbook, co-hosted a science podcast, and wrote press releases and news stories for Caltech alongside my lab work. Around 2019, I started spending most of my free time learning languages—first German, now Italian and Spanish—and started blogging about language learning in 2020. In 2021, I pitched my first science news stories to magazines. I covered a mix of US and international research in the Earth sciences and biology, and the science-vs-writing tug-of-war came to a peaceful end.

Trading my pipette for a pen was tough, but it was clearly the right choice for me. And I'm thrilled to jump into my first months of full-time science writing covering science for Voice of America's global audience this summer as an AAAS MMF fellow.


Headshot of Elise Cutts, a woman with shoulder-length blond hair wearing a yellow and blue zigzagged sweater and a purple headband standing in a room with white walls
Photo credit: Elise Cutts

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Fellowship Sponsor: American Association for the Advancement of Science

Fellowship Host: Voice of America