International Women’s Day 2017

Its a rare day when I don’t see or hear an ad promoting girls and young women in STEM fields, and I am grateful for them.

I graduate in a few weeks with my Bachelors of Science in Statistics, with minors in Mathematics and Wildlife Science. Its hard to get more STEM-y than that. During my four years at University, and four years of high school, I have taken courses in Computer Science, Mathematics, Analysis, Biology, Chemistry, Statistics, Soil Science, Animal Behavior… and the list goes on. And not once did I think, “I can’t do this because I’m a girl.” or “I’m the only girl in this room full of boys.” or “If I were a boy, I would be better at this.” Not once. Sure I cried at the kitchen table because calculus is hard, but it had nothing to do with my gender.

I am so grateful to have been born to a family where degrees in Computer Science, Engineering, and Medicine are the norm. I am so grateful for a family that promotes education, no matter what field you choose (STEM or not). And I am grateful for a family where “being a girl” was never a negative or a disclaimer. I had the role models I needed to choose a field I love, without worrying about it being a “man’s world.”

I remember talking to my dad about this recently, saying “I never thought I couldn’t do it because I was a girl.” He simply replied “Good.” I hope my children feel the same way. I hope that in my sphere of influence I am a strong example of what a woman can achieve. I hope that when I am a mother, my daughters will know that girls are stronger together. I hope we will all be supportive of everyone who is perusing what they love.

How are you celebrating International Women’s Day?

  • Write thank-you notes to the women in your life who have influenced you for the better.
  • Donate to scholarship funds or other programs that promote women getting an education.
  • Make an effort to be supportive of young girls following their dreams.

Photo by Kylee Ann Studios, outfit courtesy of Eighth & Main

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