Matt Wilkins

Matt Wilkins

Founder & CEO

Galactic Polymath Education Studio

About Me

I grew up in Huntsville, AL and now live in Minneapolis, MN. My motivation to found Galactic Polymath Education Studio (GP) was born from years of frustration as a graduate student and postdoctoral scholar trying to make academic knowledge available to the public. I tried a lot of outreach formats—I wrote fieldwork blogs, started and ran the Lincoln, Nebraska chapter of Nerd Nite for over a year, gave guest lectures at public science outreach events, and founded the No Coast SciComm conference at the University of Nebraska. Though I personally had a lot of fun and gained a lot from these experiences, it became clear that I was mostly connecting with folks who were already pretty science-engaged.

Galactic Polymath is an effort to break out of the bubble and to build long-term capacity to mobilize knowledge that is increasingly trapped and commodified in pay-walled academic journals that the broader public can’t access or understand. GP is built around the idea that:

  1. Publicly-funded research findings should be made available to everyone for free, and in a way that’s relevant to people’s lives.
  2. Every student has a right to high quality education materials.

I want to live in a world where critical thinking and curiosity are as essential as breathing. I love creative writing, cooking, and making people laugh.

Also supremely lucky to be married to the incredible biologist, data scientist, and all-around wit: Emily J. Hudson, PhD.

My full CV

  • Interdisciplinary learning
  • Teaching with stories
  • Building empathy through data literacy (data empathy)
  • PhD in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, 2014

    University of Colorado at Boulder

  • BA in Ecology & Evolution + Spanish Linguistics, 2006

    Vanderbilt University


I like to write short science fiction in my spare time. So far, I’ve only published one. Let me know on Twitter if you enjoy it :)
Popular Press
My efforts to inform and engage the public in research and education topics.
Popular Press
Though I have pivoted out of a traditional academic track, I am still continuing some work from my PhD and postdocs.

Media Coverage

I’ve been invited on a few podcasts in my capacity as a science communicator and a biologist trying to sound the alarm bell about the plastic pollution problem.
Interviews and news coverage stemming from my work as a biologist, science communicator and educator.