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Blazing The Trail For Women In Science

Blazing The Trail For Women In Science

It seems that the science industry is completely underrepresented when it comes to women. While there is a lack of women in computer science, we need to start blazing the trail for other women. While Marie Curie is the most famous woman in science, the recent news that Donna Strickland won the Nobel Physics Prize, the first woman in 55 years to do so, after Maria Goeppert-Mayer in 1963, and Marie Curie before her in 1903, are women finally blazing a trail in the science field?

Is It A Male-dominated Profession?

Some of us may consider it to be a male-dominated profession, but apart from Marie Curie, for those that are now getting their kudos now, they are setting the precedent for future female scientists. Dr Jennifer Rohn, for example, was adamant on becoming a scientist from a young age but had no knowledge of any female role models. It's unfair to think that it's a completely male-dominated industry, but women are certainly fighting for their space at the laboratory table. Unfortunately, a lot of women have been forced to leave the science profession, and with the news that a woman has won the prize, hopefully, this will upset the balance, and bring the discussion back onto women in the scientific field as more than laboratory assistants, but actually front and center of the latest exciting discoveries.

Support For Women In Science

While Jennifer Rohn didn't have her own role models growing up, there have been a handful of inspiring women in the science field. Quarraisha Abdool Karim spent 25 years researching the impact of HIV and AIDS in South Africa, and specifically for women. In 2013, she was given the highest honor South Africa can bestow, the Order of Mapungubwe, for her services. Going back in time, Marie Tharp mapped the floor of the Atlantic Ocean back in 1953, during the time when women were not allowed on research vessels, and as a result, she would draw maps from the data brought back by her research partner, a very painstaking process!

The Difficulty Of The Industry In General

But for various trailblazers, the industry can still be a difficult arena to break into. While we're not as antiquated in the barriers that Marie Tharp experienced, we could still find ourselves knocking at numerous doors to find an entry point. What is the solution? Taking the matter into your own hands may very well be the solution, starting your own research projects under a university or college that can provide the funding for the appropriate equipment, from microplates, to DNA testing, and everything in between. It is very possible that now might be the time to strike while the iron is hot for women's rights in science. Unfortunately, we are always going to have to navigate the minefield of bias in the modern age, but hopefully, with the latest step forward for women in science, fingers crossed we will see a lot more Nobel Prize winners of the female persuasion very soon!

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