Women in STEM on Furman’s Campus

Scientific-disciplines are some of the most breath-taking entities that exist in our world. STEM fields propose the intricate questions of “how” and “why” and provide ingenious insights on how to answer them. As science – and its related fields – have continued to ask these questions, they have led to nearly all knowledge-based progress humanity has obtained. While I believe STEM are nearly-perfect fields, they do have a shadow side; that is, a side that is relatively close-minded in fields known for being so thoughtful. STEM fields are composed of relatively-similar people that only think in one way with little room for debate, which only limits the progress that STEM fields could continue to make. The founders of The Society for Women in STEM noticed and felt this same way, and led Women in STEM to help combat this issue.

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Our organization stands to be a presence and a voice for those that are dissatisfied with the “humanity” side of science. If we reflect on the history of the humans in science, we discover that they tend to be calloused and competitive. To make this humanity side just as in the field of science, we provide a safe space for uncovering what advancements are needed. I personally believe that Women in STEM provides a safe space for girls to “geek-out” and be vulnerable in what they do not know. My co-president, Maddie Lewis, is the spearhead for our advocacy to express our ideas more publically and achieve more wide-spread progress. Progress, however, is an odd concept, but it is alike with knowledge in the respect that it has no entitative strength until it is shared.

While Women in STEM is a relatively-new organization on Furman’s campus, it has achieved more wide-spread attention than Maddie and I could ever ask. Already we have many proposals for new partnerships with other organizations and ideas on how to further our presence in the surrounding community. For example, we aim to help more with elementary and middle school girls understand what amazing opportunities exist in science. As I was told at the opening of the NC Science Festival Sponsorship Dinner in 2016, the loss of interest in STEM fields starts as early as elementary school. From personal experience, I was not exposed to STEM activities in the public school system until middle school and that is an inherent issue. Science is such an alluring field, and we need to maintain – and increase – this aspect so it can develop into a breath-taking field from both a discovery and a humanity perspective.

Article by Amelia Davidson, ’20.

Co-President of Women in STEM.

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