GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – February 11th is the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. It celebrates women in fields of science, math, and technology, and the efforts to inspire young girls to seek these careers.
These fields are growing all over the world. That growth comes with demands for new people in its workforce. That’s why women with scientific careers tell 9OYS they want to empower young girls to pursue jobs involving math and science.
A career in science and technology can become anything. It starts out in science but can turn into business. It can start as science and turn into quality. There are just so many avenues.Michelle Logan, VP Thermo Fisher Scientific
Michelle Logan is the vice president at Thermo Fisher Scientific, a company that focuses on areas of bio-sciences. She said growing up she realized pretty early on that math and science came naturally to her, and she enjoyed learning about it.
“Any student early on that has a passion for math and science we owe it to them to foster that,” Logan said.
Women like herself owe that to them, she said.
Thermo Fisher Scientific works with schools and community groups all over the country to spotlight science and technology to students. One of those partnerships is with Pitt Community College. They work together to bring science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and other programs to schools.
Christy Weeks is the chair for Pitt Community College’s biotechnology department. She said she often sees young girls with strong skills for math or science being pushed toward the field of nursing.
I feel like for females when they show an aptitude for science and math, a lot of times they get nudged into the health sciences, because women, you know, we are caretakers.Christy Weeks, PCC Chair Bio-Technology
Weeks says while that is a great field, it isn’t always a good fit. That’s why she wants to encourage girls to do their research, by asking teachers, instructors, school leaders, and other women what kind of science and technology options are available.
There are also tons of different science-geared programs here in Eastern North Carolina. East Carolina University’s Summer Venture Program is for heavy sciences. The Governor’s School of North Carolina has math and science opportunities for rising high school seniors. Pitt Community College runs STEM programs at schools and at their own campus.
Some schools do a Science Olympiad team, where students compete with other schools in science-related activities. All of these programs are geared toward hands-on and one-on-one learning, so students get to enjoy fun and interactive activities where they are getting first-hand knowledge.
Different programs will focus on different areas such as living organisms, computer technology, gaming and programming and more. Girls are encouraged to ask about science programs at your school.
Both Weeks and Logan say the possibilities for women in science are endless.
What I would say to young girls is just believe in yourself, that you are capable of it. The more females the more women we can get in the industry the stronger we become as a whole.Michelle Logan, VP Thermo Fisher Scientific