Emily Kwong Emily Kwong is the reporter for NPR's daily science podcast, Short Wave.
Emily Kwong
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Emily Kwong

Wanyu Zhang/NPR
Emily Kwong
Wanyu Zhang/NPR

Emily Kwong

Reporter, Science Desk

Emily Kwong (she/her) is the reporter for NPR's daily science podcast, Short Wave. The podcast explores new discoveries, everyday mysteries and the science behind the headlines — all in about 10 minutes, Monday through Friday.

Prior to working at NPR, Kwong was a reporter and host at KCAW-Sitka, a community radio station in Sitka, Alaska. She covered local government and politics, culture and general assignments, chasing stories onto fishing boats and up volcanoes. Her work earned multiple awards from the Alaska Press Club and Alaska Broadcasters Association. Prior to that, Kwong produced youth media with WNYC's Radio Rookies and The Modern Story in Hyderabad, India.

Kwong won the "Best New Artist" award in 2013 from the Third Coast/Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition for a story about a Maine journalist learning to speak with an electrolarynx. She was the 2018 "Above the Fray" Fellow, reporting a series for NPR on climate change and internal migration in Mongolia.

Kwong earned her bachelor's degree at Columbia University in 2012. She learned the finer points of cutting tape at the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in 2013.

Story Archive

Ben Elliott gets barreled at the BSR Surf Resort, where artificial waves are attracting world-class talent. Rob Henson/BSR Surf Resort hide caption

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Rob Henson/BSR Surf Resort

The Surf's Always Up — In Waco, Texas

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A male Bougainville Whistler (Pachycephala richardsi), a species endemic to Bougainville Island. This whistler is named after Guy Richards, one of the collectors on the Whitney South Sea Expedition. Iain Woxvold hide caption

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Iain Woxvold

Illustration of antibodies (y-shaped) responding to an infection with the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. KATERYNA KON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRA/Getty Images/Science Photo Libra hide caption

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KATERYNA KON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRA/Getty Images/Science Photo Libra

How Long Does COVID Immunity Last Anyway?

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A nurse holds a vial of Moderna Covid-19 vaccine. Patrick Meinhardt/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Patrick Meinhardt/AFP via Getty Images

Afraid of Needles? You're Not Alone

Many people are afraid of needles in some capacity — about 1 in 10 experience a "high level" of needle fear, says clinical psychologist Meghan McMurtry. But that fear is often underrecognized or misunderstood. That's why today's show is all about needle fear: what it is, tools to cope, and why it's important to address beyond the pandemic.

Afraid of Needles? You're Not Alone

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Fatima's Great Outdoors, written by Ambreen Tariq and illustrated by Stevie Lewis Kokila / Penguin Young Readers hide caption

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Kokila / Penguin Young Readers

A Great Outdoors For Everyone

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An axolotl photographed in Lake Xochimilco. Paul Starosta/Getty Images hide caption

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Paul Starosta/Getty Images

A Lotl Love For The Axolotl

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Kathleen Hipps was fully vaccinated when she got sick from COVID-19—a breakthrough infection. Weeks later, she's still experiencing symptoms. Kathleen Hipps hide caption

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Kathleen Hipps

A firefighter walks through the rubble in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. Shawn Baldwin/ASSOCIATED PRESS hide caption

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Shawn Baldwin/ASSOCIATED PRESS

9/11 First Responders Have Higher Cancer Risks But Better Survival Rates

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Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, second from right, speaks during a news conference on Operation Warp Speed in January, 2021. With Azar from left are Dr. Moncef Slaoui, chief science adviser to Operation Warp Speed, Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and U.S. Army Gen. Gustave Perna, chief operating officer of Operation Warp Speed. Patrick Semansky/AP hide caption

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Patrick Semansky/AP

Galaxies in the cluster CL0024+17 surrounded by a ring of dark matter. Image credit: NASA, ESA, M. J. Jee and H. Ford et al. (Johns Hopkins Univ.) hide caption

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Image credit: NASA, ESA, M. J. Jee and H. Ford et al. (Johns Hopkins Univ.)

The Peculiar Case Of Dark Matter

The universe is so much bigger than what people can see, and astrophysicist Priyamvada Natarajan is trying to figure out that which we can not see. Producer Rebecca Ramirez talks with Priya and reports on the theory about some of the secret scaffolding of the universe: dark matter.

The Peculiar Case Of Dark Matter

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Prisma Bildagentur/Universal Images Group via Getty
SCIENCE ARTWORK/SCIENCE PHOTO LI/Getty Images/Science Photo Libra

You Mite Want To Shower After This

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People who love a good thrill are known in psychology as high sensation seekers. According to psychologist Ken Carter, high sensation seekers produce less cortisol than low sensation seekers in risky situations like white water kayaking. They also seem to produce more dopamine, which is that neurotransmitter that's associated with pleasure. Behrouz Mehri/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Behrouz Mehri/AFP via Getty Images

Why A Good Scare Is Sometimes The Right Call

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Adult sunflower sea stars feed on mussels at the Friday Harbor Laboratories. Shells from earlier meals collect at the bottom of the tank. The sea star on the bottom, called Charlotte, is the mother of the lab's 1-year-old juvenile stars. Dennis Wise/University of Washington hide caption

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Dennis Wise/University of Washington