Or, more accurately, women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
And only because this week involved attending two events to do with this. Which was odd, because I have recently been attending, on average, 0 events a year. 🙂 In the past, I have attended events before. I’ve been to Grace Hopper (twice), attended a Women in CS event at my undergrad university (wasn’t a fan), and volunteered at events for girls in middle and high school.
But, this week, there ended up being two events I could attend. One, I was partly involved in organizing. But really, not very involved at all. Just loosely on the fringes. 🙂 The second, I sort of got roped into by my supervisor, who I’m sure just thought it was a friendly email to mention the event to me. However, I then felt bad saying I wasn’t going to go, and so registered to attend (especially since my supervisor was attending).
Both events were decently well attended and both involved free food. And I had a reasonably good time at both. But, they also both took up a large chunk of time on two separate days: one complete afternoon and one late afternoon and evening. I wish people could and would run much shorter events. Get people to come out, have them chat, give a short talk (if needed) and then move on. Three plus hours is a long time to devote to something, and definitely changes my productivity for the day. Although, I’m sure I could find a way to spin the events as being productive.
The good thing, is I don’t think I have another one of these to attend for a while. But, I will try to think about some of the take home messages – like the need for role models (both male and female and for both male and female students) and use of professional language (and pointing out to those who aren’t). Hmm, both of those are good blog topics for the future – maybe next week.
And, one of the events reminded me that I should contact one of my former students and see how her first semester of undergrad is working out. I’ll do that today. 🙂