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Transforming STEM: Vanderbilt Researchers Inspiring Women In STEM

STEM has historically been a male-dominated field when it comes to both interest and job opportunities. Recently, eight Vanderbilt researchers were named “Inspiring Women in STEM” as they try to encourage the younger female generation to eliminate this trend and join the STEM push.

“Eight Vanderbilt professors are recipients of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine’s 100 Inspiring Women in STEM Award,” according to Vanderbilt News.

“The award honors highly accomplished women working in science, technology, engineering or mathematics who have made a positive impact on the trajectories of other women thinking about or newly embarking on STEM careers.”

The recipients of the honor included, Janey Camp, Lily Claiborne, Isabel Gauthier, S. Victoria Green, Kelly Holley-Bockelmann, Ebony McGee, Jessica Oster and Lorie Troxel.

“As the first woman faculty member in Vanderbilt’s Department of Physics and Astronomy, I believe it is my responsibility to ease the way for women in STEM fields, especially graduate students,” Greene said in her statement regarding the honor.

Pushing for increased female participation in a male-dominated field isn’t an easy task. However, with the evolution of technology in the classroom, females are often immersed in the subject rather that having to seek it out. The challenge, however, is in keeping young women interested and encouraging them to propel themselves into a job market that is almost in direct correlation to the K-12 school system nationwide.

Some of the women do see great value in leveling the playing field instead of creating an unbalanced gender scale in STEM.

“I think it’s important for both men and women entering STEM fields to have mentors who are balancing career and family, so that they are aware of both the challenges and rewards of striking this balance and so they aren’t afraid to be devoted to both work and family when they strike out on their own,” Oster said in her statement.

The journey begins early, but women like the eight honored by the Insight Into Diversity Magazine’s 100 Inspiring Women in STEM Awards, can make huge impacts in the lives of girls in grades K-12.

Read the full story and comment below.

Article by Navindra Persaud, Education World Contributor.

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