Submitted November 29, 2007, 9:26 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
yes, my parents always wanted me to be a doctor
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
no, I always had to push myself to persue in the career I want.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I am currently a college student who is majoring in medical technology.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
no not realy
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
no
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
i was encouraged by my female teachers
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
keep doing what you beleive in
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
no
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
i dont have a family yet
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
i prefer working in teams
What is your highest level of education attained?
high school deploma
What is your professional affiliation?
medical technology


Submitted August 16, 2002, 2:29 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I wanted to be a geologist, but my mother said it was no profession for a woman. I studied biology as an undergraduate and was set to teach high school when I discovered I could not stand the education courses. I switched to environmental sciences as a way to get closer to my geological interest. My husband encouraged me to pursue the sciences, and has been supportive throughout my career.

Once in the workplace many supported me, but I did find others that tried to place roadblocks in my way.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
The faculty were always supportive of my interests, and I am lucky that I did not have problems with them. Drexel is a very scientific/engineering university so it might not have been as difficult as other schools. Still the ratio of men to women at the time was 7:1.


Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
The most significant point in my career was attending the Gordon Research Conference. I met many scientists (mostly men) who later played significant roles in helping me in my career. When Raytheon became a corporate sponsor of the Society of Women Engineers, they had to look hard to find five corporate members. That is how I ended up as a member. At the time, I was a very junior scientist in the organization.

I had to deal with many men who were uncomfortable working with a woman in the work environment early in my career. As women became more common, it lessened somewhat, but until I got into management, I often had difficulty with some of the older men. As a manager, I had some older men who had difficulty working for me, but we managed to work that out.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
My boss was to go to Germany to meet with the senior managers of the German chemical industry. He had a back problem and could not go. It would have been my place to represent the American Chemical industry at that meeting, but we both decided that a woman would not be accepted in that role by the German industrialists.

In most cases, I have been able to overcome the limitations, usually by using humor. Problems still exist, but I prefer to view them as challenges.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
The opportunites are much better now. Many of the problems I have faced are no longer a challenge to women entering the workforce. The problem is still at the top. Women have not broken the glass ceiling, but we are cracking it.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
No very to me. There were so few women in my fields at the time that I had to rely on men mentors. I find that I now work in networks and other organizations to help women who follow. The women ahead of me had an attitude that said, "I made it without help, you can too." These women did little to mentor those who followed. That is not the case today. Women are helping women.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it. It is a wonderful experience. Do not let others tell you what to do, but have the conviction that you know what you want to do. Seek many mentors, and do not feel that you are lost without a mentor. They help, but you need to make your own decisions.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were few women faculty in the sciences. A woman microbiologist really encouraged me in the sciences, but there were few women faculty. There were no history classes or other ways of learning about women in science or engineering other than personal reading.

That has changed, but the women were few and far between in the 1960s when I was in school.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
My husband and I chose not to raise a family for that reason. We are both career-oriented people and did not believe that you could devote sufficient time to both a family and a career to do both jobs well.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I am comfortable as both. I worked with teams and large structures for so long that it was fun to work by myself. I am comfortable with both enivronments.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1970


Submitted March 10, 2003, 11:33 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. My family always emphasized that I was doing well in the sciences and math classes growing up. My parents suggested engineering as a good way to support myself and apply my intelligence.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Nothing specific. I don't remember any special or unusual encouragement by my engineering or other professors. We were all just doing the best we could in our classes. Many were weedout classes.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I've been in the work environment for six years post bachelor's. I would say that my work environment is very conducive to pursuing my career, but completely out of touch with the desire to balance my life and my career. I work in an all-male environment (I am the only female full-time person out of twelve people total). Most are much older (over 40) and work way too many hours, neglecting their spouses and families, and failing to cultivate personal interests outside of work. As a result, many of them do not seem very content or very healthy. I have to take a strong and constant stand to maintain that balance in my own life, but I can see why many women do not choose this path. It is not easy.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I haven't really noticed this. Yes, the atmosphere in which I work is a lot like an "old boys' club", but I perceive I would be allowed entrance if I wanted it. I just don't want to spend my non-work hours drinking beer and socializing as much as is required to join!
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not so far. But I've only been working for six years.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
So far, I can say I haven't really had a network of women scientists or engineers. My field (mechanical engineering) was almost entirely male--both teachers and fellow students. All my important contacts (in terms of grad school and jobs) to date have been male.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Be disciplined and work hard, but don't forget to appreciate your efforts. Many of your male colleagues will not be lavish with praise though you will likely earn their quiet respect with a good work ethic.

Never sacrifice personal happiness for a job. It is possible to balance personal desires and preferences with work, but it may not be easy since that's not the default behavior in engineering.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I only remember one female engineering professor who stuck out as a role model. She really seemed to care that all her students would do well and went out of her way to get us (men and women) to come see her for help.

No.

No.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Not so far. But I have not raised a family (yet). Also, my colleauges do not do much of the day-to-day work in raising their own families.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
No.

I prefer to do the bulk of my work individually and efficiently as possible and then come together with the appropriate folks to touch base and review progress on a regular basis. My job involves lots of coordination with people and balance between that and my own work is key.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1999


Submitted August 14, 2002, 8:32 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I can't say that I was encouraged at all, but I don't believe I was ever discouraged, either.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes. I had several professors at NDSU who seemed supportive. They helped get me interested in many aspects of electrical engineering and encouraged my participation in extra-curricular engineering activities.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I do not work directly with any other women engineers or scientists, which can be frustrating at times. I would have to say that yes, my work environment has encouraged and continues to encourage me to pursue my career.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I have only been out of college 4 years, so don't feel I can really answer this question.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
During college especially and now since college as well, the networks have been very important.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Do not get discouraged by others who may feel you don't "belong" -- the challenges and rewards will more than make up for those instances.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I did not encounter any scientists or engineers that I would consider role models until my third year in the program. There was no course offered on the history of women in science and engineering, but several were discussed in the 2 History of Technology courses I took. Yes, I did then learn about their accomplishments.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I am single, and have noticed that when others have family demands, I am expected at times to pick up their slack.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I would prefer to work as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Don't know / can't remember



Submitted May 9, 2003, 1:53 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. I was a geek and I figured Science was my thing. No one told me otherwise. I did notice that in the advanced courses in high school, it was mostly girls in the class. My parents expected me to go to college (asians do that). My highschool biology teacher did warn me that biochemistry as a profession could be boring as she was one. Being a tech is tedious. That was when I decided to get an advanced degree.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I was a biochem major and had good grades. No one discouraged me in college. When there was a summer job to test out a new chem course, my chem professor did suggest I apply for the job as I had done well in the course.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
A bachelors degree was pretty easy. No discouragment as far as I could tell. The Engineering department I heard though was a different story.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
As a graduate student, I had to switch labs as my professor ran out of money. I went to one of the professors and he asked me for my math grades. Since I had done my undergrad in this department (very small department), it was known that I had good math skills. He didn't have any minorities in his lab and this was his way of getting rid of me.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Opportunities are changing but still the successful women all seem to have "wives" that supported their demanding careers.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
The networks were very important. Any organization that allows you to vent or gather informatoin is exteremely important.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Get an MD not a PhD. Much more flexibility and a lot more pay.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Not really. Most of the students were female, but the Biochem teachers were predominatly male. The Biology department had 2 female scientists and they were brand new and didn't come on baord till the middle of my graduate program.

Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? No.

Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers? No, but I did join the Association for Women in Science in graduate school. I took some other graduate students with me for a meeting and one comment from a friend: They are not all dyckes. The problem was that the female faculty at my university looked like they barely ever saw daylight. Not a good image. The men weren't any better looking but you expected that. Unfortunately, women are graded on thier looks.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
The women with children were much more efficient than I was in graduate school. Now that I am in technical scientific sales, I have found that the flexibility in work hours will be perfect for raising children.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have done group and independent work. There is no job that requires you to work completely alone. I like being able to work independtly with bouts of team work. You get lonely working alone. But some of your colleagues may dump all the work on you and then I don't want to work with them at all.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1995


Submitted August 13, 2002, 11:14 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes - I had great teachers in both elementary and high school who encouraged both male and female students to do what they loved. I excelled in math and sciences, and I took "honors" classes, so the instructors led me to believe that I could and would do well in whatever I chose to do. Since this was all at 2 public schools in El Paso, Texas, I feel very blessed. I know this was not the case for everyone.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Definitely yes. I felt totally at home in the Geology Department at Texas Christian University. I had two advisors who worked with me very closely (both male) who helped train me to become a research scientist and encouraged me to pursue an academic career.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I got a M.S. in Geology at Arizona State University. It was my intent on entering the program to get my M.S. and go to another school for a Ph.D. and to become a full professor at a university. The experience I had at ASU fully suffocated that idea and that dream. Some of the experience had to do with individuals in the department, some with the department as a whole, some with the realizations of what a Research I institution was really like, and some was due to realizing the LARGE number of sacrifices one had to make to become a well-respected researcher (with respect to 80+ hour weeks and no time to have or raise children). So, emphatically NO, my experience didn't encourage me to pursue the original dream.

However, I was lucky enough to get involved in the local community college system after receiving my MS, and I found that my dream was really focused on the *teaching* part of the educational system. I am very happy where I am and doing what I'm doing (teaching GLG101/102 @ Glendale Community College), and I feel lucky that I fell into something that I truly love.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I don't think that outside forces have directly affected me or hampered my career solely based on my being female. More, I feel that society and the science community is no overly accepting of women who want to have children, and I feel some pressure and some "wierdness" surrounding my decision to begin to try to conceive.

Otherwise, I feel my pay and level of advancement is in tune with male collegues in my profession.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Since I have not really felt hampered based on my gender, I don't really see any significant change.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
It was very nice to have lots of other female students going through grad school at the same time as I did. It was nice to have a sounding board for my ideas and to see that there was a significant population of women geoscientists.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
DO WHAT YOU LOVE, and don't let anyone else decide what that is!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Very few women (none in my college dept.); those I ran into the grad program were definitely NOT role models (they lacked any ethical position in my opinion).

No - no classes

Yes - but just the "mainstream" like Marie Curie, etc.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I know that I could not have been a Research I research scientist and have had time to be the mother I want to be.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Really either, depending on the project. I usually do best working with 1 other person or in a small group.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1997


Submitted January 16, 2003, 5:11 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. My father was a scientist and a professor. He and my mother encouraged me to read science related books and to pursue my interests in various areas. I was never discouraged by them in any way.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes and no. Some professors encouraged me to go to graduate school. There was only one who made it clear he did not think women belonged in his area of work, and thereafter, I did avoid that area of study!
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My graduate school environment certainly did encourage me. My mentor was a woman.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
My limitations have been a product of my own choices interacting with circumstances. I have not chosen to job hop as some people have, which has probably held me back in some respects. But I am also probably happier for it.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not really. There is less overt hostility to women in science now than there was, but women are still shouted down by men in some contexts.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Mildly important. I have usually been the one providing the mentoring, rather than receiving it.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Know what you really want in life - what your real goals are. Do you want to be famous or do you want to be happy? You might not get to do both. Pick a mate who sincerely supports you, and be ready to negotiate during the ups and downs of both your careers. Recognize that careers go through stages, just as people themselves do. Expect change, but think ahead to be sure you are really pursuing your goals. Don't pick science unless you truly love it. Faculties are already sufficiently full with burned out data shovelers who lost their spark years ago.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were women researchers I met in college who were faculty role models. There were no classes I knew of (early 70's!) on women in science.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes definitely. My family has been a factor in my decision-making re: opportunities.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like to work in a team. I have my own research group and a large network of collaborators.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1980


Submitted August 14, 2002, 9:01 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, My father encouraged me to study those fields because there we so few women in that area.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, My female professors have been excellent mentors, However the older male professors seemed to make it harder on women.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have further pursued my education and have finished my MS in BME and am striving toward my PHD. I feel that there needs to be more female professor involved in engg.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Same
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very!
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Find a good role model and they can show you all the right ropes there are to climb being a women in engineering.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes, No, Yes, through SWE
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
To an extent, especially in the industrial field, I think there is minimal flexibility for women than there is in acadamia. That is one main reason why I have chosen that path.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes, I prefer either or depending on the program, however in a team setting I typically like to take an active lead role to make sure things are done to my satisfaction level.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2002


Submitted August 17, 2002, 5:41 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was not actively encouraged. I was very interested in math - so I entered college as a mathematics major. In spite of the fact that my father was a PhD engineer, no one had suggested engineering as a career for me. I transferred to engineering after the end of my first year in college. I have a degree in Applied Mathematics with a minor in Electrical Engineering and am a professional engineer registered in Colorado - so I am effectively an electrical engineer. (P.S. my guidance counselor in high school told me not to bother applying early decision to the University of Virginia - I was a Virginia resident. I applied anyway and was accepted.) When I called home my first year in college to tell my parents that I was transferring to engineering, my mother's response was "no." (which she now denies) My father was ecstatic.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Absolutely yes. They were wonderful. I entered the University of Virginia in the Fall of 1972, the third year that UVa admitted women after a decision of the U.S. Supreme Court. My statistics professor (after I failed the first test, found a tutor, and made an A in the class) hired me to be a research assistant to one of his graduate students. Through that experience and others (one of the professors that I graded papers for), I have to say that I had an extremely supportive college experience - in spite of no female professors.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have had a great career. I do generation and transmission planning for electric utilities. Started at one of the best - Duke Power Company. Then had experience selling coal and learning about the coal market at Mobil Oil Corporation's Mining and Coal Division. Entered consulting in 1984 and have consulted continuously even during my stint as Director of the Women in Engineering Program at CU-Boulder from 1997-2000. Of course there has been discrimination, of course, there has been harassment. But I have thoroughly enjoyed my career and I define myself as an engineer.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
After working at Duke Power for about three years, I was told that I would not be sent to management development training until I was 30. (I was 24). However, my husband who was six months older than me was sent to this training. Other than this, I can't say I have been denied any opportunities - I have to go out looking for them, however, and I'm not sure that the men do. I am satisfied with where I am in my career right now - I am self-employed doing consulting and many other things.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I believe the opportunities for me continue to improve.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Networks of women scientists and engineers have only been part of my life since 1979 - and they have been a lifeline. I joined the Society of Women Engineers in 1979 and finally found a place where I belonged. I became National President in 1991-1992. I consider it a key part of my life - a family unit. There was no section of SWE at UVa when I was a student and I did not find it until after I had graduated and gone to work for Duke Power.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If you like mathematics and sciences - just do it! Science and engineering are careers where people CAN make a difference and contribute to making the world a better place.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No women scientists/engineers as role models. As I have indicated UVa didn't admit women until the Fall of 1970. No, I never took any classes. I started learning about the accomplishments on women scientists and engineers in 1988 and have now written (and published) one book on the history of women in engineering and the book on the history of women in science is at the publishers waiting to be edited. I speak and write often on the history of women scientists and engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Many of the most successful women engineers that I know are married but do not have children. I was unable to have children.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I am extremely self-motivated. However, I do like to work in teams and on projects with other people. I am quite capable of working on projects by myself however. It depends on what the project at hand is and how to best use other people's expertise.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1979


Submitted August 19, 2002, 11:28 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Hello,
I was never encouraged or discouraged. I was gifted in math and very inquisitive. My parents treated me equally with my brothers and sisters. Chores that needed to be done needed to be done. It was never considered boy or girl chores, just chores. I did envy my brothers toys that allowed them to build things. I was able to experiment with them when they outgrew them.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I was very fortunate as an undergrad. My strong math and science skills allow me to cruise through many of my classes. I was the one who new the answers. I was the one who could answer the differcult questions in class or on exams. Other students asked my for solutions.

The physics department faculty was very friendly and supportive. There was no question about changing my major. I was being challenged and was part of the departmental family.

My Graduate experiences were not as good. I was not in a study group. I had to find the answers on my own. The faculty was not as approachable. I found things very difficult. I felt that I was not prepared and that everyone had a better foundation. I left after two years with my masters and decieded that I would never do graduate school again.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Yes and no.

I have been working as an engineer for over 17 years. I could tell you stories both good and bad. I have had support and mentoring from very good male engineers. I have also been harassed to the point that I am sure I could have pressed charges.

I felt that I had to be twice as good as any of my male counter parts inorder to be given the respect that they naturally recieved.

I have always tried to open the door for future women engineers by not be aggressive or atack those that harrassed me for being a women.

Engineering is very much a man's club. They will allow some of us in from time to time. Sometimes men just want to be with their own, which is fine but it does exclude us women from getting ahead.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes
I could not participate in the company golf league.

I was harrassed by a fellow engineer, because I was a woman. He would say derogatory things behind my back. I am sure that it cost me one raise and probably a promotion. Finally after I earned my Professional Engineering License I did recieve the promotion. No one else in that new position was a PE.


Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I take risks. My husband is always there for support. I think things have changed for the better.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
My current position as Director of a NSF-ATE project is to give woman and minorities skills in Computer Integrated Manufacuring. I currently am working on that network.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Find yourself a mentor and a support system. If the envoriment is not nuturing change it. Do not go about things aggressively, but be confident and patient.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, no, no.
Madame Curie was the only women scientist in any book.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Raising a family is tough. If I was to leave my field my skills would be come outdated. This would cause me to start over or find a new career. The company I was working for did allow me to work reduced hours and pump while at work. They did try, but they still had more to learn about the career mother.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have adapted to whatever the latest trend is. I do believe that team work is here to stay because it works.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
95


Submitted February 17, 2003, 10:10 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
As a girl, I grew up on a ranch . My oldest brother was 6 years younger than I and there was much work to be done, some required mechanical training and logical problem training. I wanted to be a vet, which was greatly encouraged.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
In the 1950s I was frequently the only female in a class. Recognition and postitve support depended on the individual professors. I was not aware that any of the students were being encouraged to look beyond the first degree,



Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After completing a BA in Chemistry I taught Earth Science in the 8th grade in a grossly impacted Denver suburb (1959-63) and then returned to get adequate math and science to begin study for a PhD in Astrophysics. I received personal support and recognition that was a great help.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
After I entered graduate school in 1965 I received a lot of support. I married in my senior year and maintained that marriage through gracuate school and went through the trama of the 2 career family in 1969-73. I had no children and committed fully to my work. I found many who were willing to let me fork with them and for them on aspects that established my reputation.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
My reputation as a manager became known and I have been offered opportunities that I did not explore. The older I get the more opportunities have shifted in this direction.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
In my early career Ihad no network. In the past 20 yearws I have worked as a senior contributor, taking time and energy away from fame and fortune.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If you marry, marry someone wo is not in a closely related field.

Consider the LIFESTYLE that you want and need, THEN plan you training and development plan to attain it.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. No. No.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I had no children. I was aware of the huge demand that our work in Planetary Exploration put on the wives of my male associates and how little time those men had for their families.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked with many colleagues in small groups and large team situations.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1969


Submitted January 8, 2003, 2:19 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, my parents and teachers encouraged my interest in math and science.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
None went out of their way to encourage me.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My work environment has been mainly positive, with several excellent mentors. The negative experiences of assumptions that I was a secretary have been more than balanced out.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I have only been working for 5 years, so haven't seen a large change over that time period.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very important in early career, nonexistant during my education.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Gain lots of practical experience through internships to see the best way to use your scientific background. Take many classes outside the sciences -- written and verbal communication skills learned in those are invaluable.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I had a one professor who I considered a role model. She was young, energetic, and conducting cutting edge research. I did not take any classes on the women in science and enginnering, and history classes focused on accomplishments - not gender.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Not yet.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked in small offices that require extensive teamwork, so have learned to thrive in those environments.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2000


Submitted August 14, 2002, 3:41 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes - as a good student I was encouraged to participate in academic competitions for math, writing, history, and science fairs. Perhaps I was encouraged even more BECAUSE I am female. Eventually, it was my high school drafing teacher that introduced me to engineering and helped give me the confidence to pursue an engineering career.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes - My professors were eager to answer questions both during and after class. I was encouraged to apply for grants to support independent research in Africa, which I was awarded. I became involved in several professional engineering orgnanizations, including Society of Women Engineers, Society of Plastics Engineers, and Society of Manufacturing Engineers. I developed personal relationships and informal mentorships with most of my professors, many of which I still keep in contact with today.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Yes - most notably is my company's support of my professional development as an active member of the Society of Women Engineers.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes - a promotional opportunity for me was continually postponed for over a year. It has caused me to wonder if the position would have opened up faster if I were male. Also, I'm not that interested in golfing, fishing, or sports (particularly football, basketball, and auto racing), which leaves me out of many social conversations.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
n/a
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very important.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Take risks. Let your curiosity take over and discover what interests you.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I had two female engineering professors. Older female engineering students served as role models. The only female scientist I remember is Marie Curie. I did not take any classes on the history of women in science and rarely learned about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
b/a
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked in the same department of 5 for 2 years. We are a close group. I prefer both individual and team aspects.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
2000


Submitted October 25, 2002, 11:32 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No. Although in the top 10 in my class of over 650 in high school and taking an accelerated track with college placement classes, the mind set in the public school and at home was that further education was a temporary activity until marriage and babies happended!
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
There was no stated encouragement or discouragement, but an assumption that I would teach (though I was in a research environemnt as a physics major).
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After graduate school I taught for two years, and learned about opportunities working in industry through my husband. My husband was working at a small research lab outside of Boston, and weekends and summers I helped him out (he always seemed to have extra stuff to do!). I quickly realized that the life of an engineer or scientist was far more to my liking than that of a high school physics teacher! With my husband's help (yes, my new boss extracted a promise from my husband to help me if I had trouble with the job) I moved to industry in 1976, starting out as an individual contributor, moving to running projects, then programs, managing departments, and so on. Today, I manage a few hundred people and a budget of more than $70M a year developing leading edge technology for the semiconductor industry.

I received NO encouragement (and actually a fair amount of discouragement) in the work environment until about 12 years ago, when I had a boss that told me that I had all the skills and knowledge to take me to the top, but that given the world we were in, I would have to do far more than anyone else (all male of course!) if I wanted to get there.

All the encouragement I have had has been from my husband, and as stubborn as I am, without his support, I might not have gotten to where I am today.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I can remember a few things. I am providing dates so that you can see the trends.

Late 70's - my husband got asked if it was ok for me to travel to a customer with some of my (male) co-workers before I even knew of the trip

Early 80's - I got told that although qualified for a Asst Director's job it would not happen since the guys would not be able to take direction from a woman; I was expected to understand why this was "ok" and be satisfied with helping someone else do the job rather than getting the advancement for myself

Mid 80's - I got told that my long blond hair was not right for the image of an engineering manager, and if I was serious about my career, I would cut it (this came from the only woman executive in the company) (stubborn person that I am, I did not cut it and I continued to dress with my own style!).

Late 80's - Accomplishments finally counted for somthing, and the company awarded me the President's Award (first time it went to a woman) and also sent me to Executive Management training (one of those condensed/partial MBA type courses done over a 6 month period).

One thing about being a woman in a "man's" field - you stand out. This can be good and it can be bad. When you are young and learning, your less than perfect accomplishments are very visible, which can intimidate someone whose confidence is a bit shaky or who is in an environment that is not supportive. You can also get more recognition, and potentially accomplish more with your successes, because you are easy to remember!
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
From looking at a few of the other responses, it looks like things have gotten better. There are certainly more women around as role models, and I have often been given the great compliment that I am one of them!


How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
They did not play a role.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it! Be sure though, that you do what makes you happy.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I do not remember any women teaching any of the science, engineering, or math classes at the state university I attended. I certainly did not encounter any in undergraduate or graduate school.

And although I took the necessary course work to get certified to teach, I do not remember anything being offered on the history of women in science and engineering (this was the early 70s and the definition of a minority was not based on gender).

There were no role models and no one described the opportunities in terms of fields and work one could go into, and I do not know if this was done for the men, either. Not too surprising, although I got a BS and MA in Physics, the first thing I did was teach!
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
The path I wound up in would not have tolerated the pulls that come with raising a family. Even now, I travel >30% of the time. This is extrememly hard on you as an individual, and I think jobs with travel require a strong support network when raising a family in order for all to be ok.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked the entire range. Today, it is hard to image myself as an individual contributor as compared to leading a group, so I guess that means that today I prefer a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma



Submitted April 29, 2003, 10:01 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
yes, my mother always encouraged me to do whatever I wanted.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
no, I never received any sort of support, moral or material.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Even though he knew I was good, my boss refused to acknowledge it. He also gave better performance appraisals for the other member in my team, a guy.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
The performance appraisal my boss did showed me that if I were a male I would have got a better appraisal which translates to a higher increment - so in the end being a women affected the amount I earned. The other guy in my team got a better appraisal than me even though I completed the task assigned to me a whole 2 months earlier - my boss just refused to acknowledge that I've completed - he ignored me despite my telling him that I'm done.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
no change.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I knew of networks of women scientists/engineers only during my career- they were very,very helpful in building confidence as well as knowledge.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Perseverance is the key to success.Don't let people's attitudes upset you, just keep going! Best of luck!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I didn't encounter any female role models, had no class on the history of women in S&E, and didn't learn about any accomplishment of women scientists/engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
yes.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1999


Submitted January 16, 2003, 3:54 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. My parents always encourgaed me to purse whatever i was interested in. I was actually unaware that girls "didn't do science" because I never felt any of that in my own upbringing.
My parents also alwys supplied whatever toys I was interested in, which included Legos and erector sets. My 6th grade teacher was particularly encourgaing and held an optional after school programming class in BASIC that I loved.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I majored in mechanical engineering and alwys felt like an important member fo the deaprtment. I never felt any discouragement.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After my bachelor's degree, I worked for Air Products and Chemicals doign machinery selection, testing and plant startups. Even in this traditionally male field I excelled, and never felt
like anyone thought i didn't below. I alwys felt as though I was judged on merit, not on gender.
After 4 years I returned to graduate school full-time, finishing my masters degree and then a PH.D.
I received much support in the Ph.D., even at a traditional research institution (University of Minnesota). There
were many women PH.D. mechanical engineering candidates. We have a social group which the women faculty also belonged to and which met monthly for lunch.
There was also a Women in Science and Engineering group which met regularly on campus and which I was a part of. I was fully
accepted by the other graduate studetns and the faculty.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No. I have acheived everything that I have set out to do at this stage in my career. I have a Ph.D. in Mechanical Enginering and a tenure-track faculty position.
I have been awarded grants, I serve on high ranking ASME committees and I am
fully accepted by all my collegeagues. I have never had the feeling that I
have been judged on anything other than merit.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I have always seen a lot of opportunites.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I liked the network of women graduate students I have during my Ph.D. studies, but more for the social aspect than anything else.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it. Engineering can be an extremely fun and rewarding career path.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. No. No.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I conceived my daughter (now age 3) during the time in which I was completing my Ph.D. experiments and dissertation.
My advisor was supportive and allowed me to bring her into the lab and to our meetings during her infancy. I defended my
thesis just a few weeks before her first birthday.

I have been in a demanding tenure-track position for the last two years, and while she is in
day-care full-time, I wouldn't have it any other way. She is now 3 1/2 and loves her "school" and her friends there.
I love my job, which allows me the flexibility I need as a working mother.
We spend a lot of time together and I don't feel as though I have missed out on anything.

I will be spending a semester on sabbatical in Germany and she will remain with my husband in the states.
This will be difficult, but my husband and family are very supportive and will make the
transistion easier on her. I look forward to being able to take her with me on my next sabbatical when she is 10, and expose her to foregin travel and
experiences most children do not have.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I do all my research with a colleague. We get 4x as much work done as working alone.
I prefer to work this way. We have been in a research team for 2 years and have been quite successful.

What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
2000


Submitted February 10, 2003, 6:15 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I grew up in a strange town where my mom and many
of my friends mom's were scientists. It was not until
I left this town for college that I encountered
someone who did not automatically expect
that I would become a scientist.

Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Since I was at the top of my class and had no doubts
that I would become a theoretical physicist, I always
assumed I had the support of my professors.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
In general I'd say that the people I work with and
have worked with were rather gender blind,
although I think many subtle gender biases have hurt
my career. For instance, I've never been at a working
group meeting were a guy who interupted to make a point
was told not to interrupt, but this has happened to me
several times.

Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Again, it's the subtle things not the blatant things,
or the things you learn about years later like an
individual not having given you a glowing reference
when the indications were he should have - it's the
cummulative effect. Basically one has to be
a lot more confident without the "societal
expectation" that one will be sucessful, especially
when one encounters one of the remaining dinosaurs
who actively discriminate. I find it interesting
to note how a colleges reactions to me being a
professional woman vary based on their county of
origin - it reminds one how far the US has come, and
also how far it has to go.

Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I had a dinosaur as a group leader and just got tired
of fighting and started focusing on outreach.

How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
In grad school and my current employment are the
the only two places I've really had access to
a network of women scientists. I'd say when it works
as a professional interaction it helps a lot, but
when it becomes focused on career problems it's almost
more depressing than helpful
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Don't let anyone tell you what you can't do.
Assume you are the best.

When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Despite having a mother who is a physicist and that
my best friend's mom when I was a kid was a chemist,
in hindsight I don't think I really focused on female
role models - I wanted to be a theorist like my dad
rather than an experimentalist like my mom. One thing
I do notice in hindsight is that I always wondered why
the few women in my physics classes were taking physics
although I considered it "obvious" why I was taking
physics classes and never really thought about why the
guys in the class were taking physics.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I have not raised a family. As far as colleagues,
I've seen examples where this lead to the woman
basically giving up here career, but I've also seen
examples where the woman took a more managerial path
which led to her being the main wage earner. I've also
seen a few examples where the husband gave up his
professional career to be the home parent - although
still atypical, I think this is becoming more
acceptable. Although again in our society anything
that goes against the expected norm is that much harder
due to the subtle questioning and lack of expectation
of success.

Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer working individually as part of a focused
team, by which I mean I have an aspect that I am fully
responsible for but there is well defined set of people
interested in the answer and actively working on other
aspects of the general problem.

What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
86


Submitted August 9, 2002, 1:57 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No, definitely not. I was flat-out told that science was not for girls.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, most professors were supportive but I did not have any female science professors to be a mentor.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I received very little assistance or encouragement from my dissertation advisor. He did not help me at all in choosing a career path or seeking employment.

I never had opportunities to work in the field of geology until I completed my PhD. Although I had many qualifications after completing my bachelor's and years later my master's, the jobs that came my way were always the usual "female" jobs like salesclerk, office clerk, etc.

After I completed my PhD, I sought a teaching position; again, I received no assistance from my dissertation advisor, so didn't have any luck in finding a faculty position. I realize now that I was looking at the wrong type of positions for me, and going about finding the right type of positions the wrong way. Had I received some guidance in graduate school, I believe I would have had better luck in finding a faculty position.

I now work for a small engineering company. I have been employed here for 5 years. It has its good points and its bad points. I continue to look at teaching positions, but I only consider those that I think would be a good fit for me.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I applied for an internship with the USGS when I was in graduate school. I was actually told that I had the position, then later found out that they had actually already decided to give it to a male graduate student who was a colleague of mine. He was a hiking buddy of one of the employees there and had the support of our mutual advisor, whereas I did not.

By the way, this same advisor told me the day I arrived on campus that he did not usually have much use for people like me. I was there on a particular kind of grant that he did not approve of, therefore he had already decided that he did not approve of me. It was a "no win" situation for me all the way. I believe that at least part of this was due to the fact that I am a woman.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think opportunities are better now than they were when I first decided to major in geology. When I first applied at engineering/geology companies after my bachelor's and again after my master's, I wasn't even considered for positions. Frankly, I don't need a PhD to do the work that I do now, so having a PhD was not the reason that I finally got hired. I think times have changed enough that I finally got a professional position.

Unfortunately, this doesn't seem to carry over into academia. I am adjunct faculty at the college near where I work, but I seldom get the opportunity to teach. They have gone outside to hire males when they have needed one-semester or one-year sabbatical replacements instead of asking me. The department is all male except for one female lecturer who is treated like dirt by her male colleagues. Therefore I definitely believe my being female has a lot to do with the fact that they avoid having me teach if they can. When I do teach, I receive excellent student evaluations, so lack of teaching ability is certainly not the reason.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Of little or no importance as I simply was unaware of any such networks until joining AWG in recent years.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If you get an advisor like the one I had, run! Find someone who will help you complete your research, help you complete your degree, assist you with identifying your career goals and going for them.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No women scientists/engineers who were role models; simply no women in the department I was in. The one exception was a woman who held a lecturer position who was very encouraging to women in the graduate program.

Did not take classes on history of women in science/engineering - no such classes available.

Did not learn about accomplishments of women scientists/engineers.

I am a geologist, but had I known many years ago anything at all about engineering, I would have gone into that field. As it was, only boys went into engineering.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Definitely. The one female mentor that I had in graduate school only had a master's and was at the lecturer level. She was married with several children and had not had the opportunity to complete a PhD.

I am also married, and have not had the opportunities to take positions that require travel or extra time commitments - not because I have not expressed interest, but because it is assumed that because I am a woman, and married, my place is home.


Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I am the only geologist at the firm I work for. I enjoy being my own boss much of the time, but I do miss interacting with other geologists and bouncing ideas off of them. So I guess I'd say I prefer to work individually but would like to able to interact with a 'loose' team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1996


Submitted August 16, 2002, 10:30 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Well, my experience started in High School when I joined a Computer Club and was told I would probably end up in Engineering by the President of our Computer Club. I kind of scoffed at that, because I didn't like Math. But eventually I did get deeper into Math because I continued on. Then I was supported very much by NASA Engineers to continue because of my interest and hard work.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
At first in the University no, but then there was this Irish Professor who had an interest in me and challenged me but I think always hoped I would make it through the EE department. Then there was this other Professor that worked at NASA and taught at the University and when he found out my background, encouraged me very much to carry on until I finished. The only problem was I finished in 1986 which was the time of the Challenger Disaster.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Once I finished my Bachelors Degree, I couldn't join NASA as there was a freeze on from the Challenger Disaster and so I joined an Aerospace Company and looked at Reliability Engineering and Satellite Computers and Electronics. But that really didn't satisfy me. So I tried to go back to NASA after the freeze with the Aerospace Company as a contractor in Life Sciences but that wasn't it either. So I wound up leaving both NASA and the Aerospace Company and going to a Mainframe Company where my dreams came true working on Mainframes as a Test Engineer. That was until the Mainframe Company collapsed and I then wound up joining a startup Storage Management Company where I have been to this day helping out testing their software and helping customers when their problems.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I was very suprised to learn that NASA was among the most discriminatory agencies around in the 70's and 80's - that was suprising given that I felt very close to the agency to consider working for them full time.
But I really felt it as a Contractor with this Aerospace Company that I worked with. I was very disgusted with it.

Also I was suprised to find my own University had discrimination against Women Engineers and that I graduated in about 15% minority. I was let through only because of my persistence and stubborness to finish. Also, NASA kept nudging me on. I think there was some foresight there.

That has changed since, since more Women Engineers have gotten more involved and awareness has increased, the discrimination is not as much. It has helped alot. However, with the economy down, I think some of it has come back in some companies, which isn't good.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
They have gotten better defnitely. They have gotten more complex so you have to keep up with the information and technology. Sometimes I think we have stepped on ourselves with computers and gotten too complex, giving ourselves more troubles then we should have. Remember when computers was supposed to help us live life better and work less? Have they? Maybe in some instances they have but for us who work in them, there still is a discrepency in educating the common person with them and using them for the help they are supposed to be giving us in all aspects in our lives.
This is why there are more opportunies for this.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Network of Women Scientists and Engineers are very important for information, support, knowledge and networking for further opportunies for advancement and growth. You need them all your life as long as you are in Science and Engineering.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it. There are alot of opportunitities for your mind, talent and curiosity if that is what you are interested in. In every field from Medicine to Electronics to Oceanography, there are fantastic opportunities to discover and explore new fields like we have never had before. That includes space.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, I didn't really encounter any Women Scientists or Engineers, my role models were NASA Engineers. They were very honorable and professional in their careers and inspired me alot.

No I didn't attend any history of women in Science and Engineering classes, but I read alot on the side and would read about the history of Women Engineers, Pilots and Scientists to keep me interested and understand about their accomplishments.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No, I have never been married, so I couldn't answer that. I almost got married after getting my degree but it didn't work out, but it had nothing to do with my being an Engineer.

With my work today, if I got married, it wouldn't effect the work that I do.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes, I can work individually or with a team. It depends on the company and the type of structure they have. In a previous company, I worked with a partner and we got awards for a tool we did for mainframe computers.

Currently, I work individually sort of but because of the way the company structured I also work in a team with coworkers all over the world including the US and Canada.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)



Submitted August 9, 2002, 1:53 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I am 53 and grew up in the 1950's and 60's. I was never
discouraged by my family from anything, but in high school,
science and math were not taught well. Nothing overt
was ever said, but boys got most of the attention.
I was an art major when I first started in college
(1966) and did not change to geology until I had to
take a physical science class as a requirement for
graduation. I took geology because it seemed the least
math-oriented. I liked it, so I took the second class
and was hooked. I stopped in 1974, then came back in
1990 to finish and finally got a BS in 1994. I am
currently working on a master's in GIS (Geographic
Information Systems).
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes. Our geology department (Cal State Fullerton in
California) has always encouraged all students, no
matter what gender or age to follow their own path.
They are very supportive, even helping students who
were not in one of their classes.
I can not say the same for other departments.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I am not actually working as a scientist now. After I
got my BS, I worked in a water testing lab for low pay.
On my own, I got a GIS certificate and am now working
in that field. I test software, write help files, do
other computer related tasks. I would not call what I
do a carreer as such, it is a job. I hope to finish my
master's in GIS in about 1 1/2 years and then teach GIS
and geology.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I think perhaps I was not hired as a geologist when I
finished school partly because I was a woman, but also
because of age. No one ever said anything specific,
but they always gave the job to some one younger, mostly
males.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes. I would say there are more oportunities in a
wider variety of fields now than in the 1960's. Then
geologists (women or men) could pretty much only work
for an oil company or the government. Back then oil
companines did not hire women as geologists. You might
get a goverment position, but only if you were really
good.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
not important at all. My story is not typical
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If you want a career in geology - go for it, bearing in
mind that the first person that gets laid off when
times get tough is the geologist and companies seem to
play musical chairs with geologists. If you have a
bachelors only, you won't find much work. Join a local
geological society and attend the meetings regularly.
That is where you get to meet local employers and other
professionals in the field. Often jobs are spoken of
there that never appear in print.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes - the most memorable was Dr. Margaret Woyski who
got her doctorate at a time when women were not allowed
to take science classes. She was often not allowed to
sit with the men.
I never heard of any history of women in science classes.

In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Of course. Raising children is very demanding. I have
worked at a great many jobs over the years, all
affected to one degree or another by having a child. I
went to work when my son was 2 because we didn't have
enough to make the rent. I took classes at night to
better our options - accounting, etc. I finally decided
to go back and finish my degree and that was the best
decision I ever made - wish I had done it sooner.

Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
No. I can work fine either way. I have always worked in
small companies - seldom more than 10 to 15 employees.
In such companies, each person is usually required to
do a number of different things and work closely with
others
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
2002


Submitted August 16, 2002, 9:39 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
no, most of the girls I grew up with were encouraged to be lady like and to learn how to cook, clean, dress, etc.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, encourgement from professors even when I was having a difficult time in some of the courses I took. I also received some from classmates which most were male.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have worked as a Ecommerce Test Manager, Web Application Team Lead and senior software tester. No m work environment did not encourage me to pursue my career. Some of my managers encouraged me to take courses but for the most part I encouraged myself to further my skills and training by taking at least 1 course a year.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes, most of the companies I worked for had very few female top level executives and had very few middle management female executives and many females were treated differently by salary, promotions, job expectations, and level of respect. At my current job women were liked if they were seen and not heard. If you were intelligent and confident you were seen as aggressive, confrontational and not respecting authority and not respected.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
My opportunities have gotten somewhat better be my salary is much less than that of my male counterparts and the level of respect for my male counterparts is much less towards me.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I was not aware of any networks of women engineers during my education and only became aware of them about 5 years ago.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Stay comitted to the sciences, there are several support groups and mentors that can help you with you academics and career choices. We need more women in this field to help break down the stereotype that women and inferior to men, that women cannot be intelligent in the sciences and succeed.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I only took one course with a woman who was much older than the rest of the students. I had only 2 female professors that taught computer classes. They did not offer any classes on the history of women in science. I did not learn about any accomplishments about women in science until I graduated college.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work individually
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)



Submitted September 11, 2002, 8:28 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
My family was very encouraging, in part because my dad was an electrical engineer and my grandfather was a biochemist. My brothers and I even got a motorized erector set for Christmas one year -- the ultimate gift for a future engineer! I also had my own little collection of hand tools, starting from when I was 5 or 6 (so I wouldn't swipe my dad's). But my high school guidance counselor could never get past the teacher-or-nurse stereotyping for his "smart girls." He strongly recommended that I attend a women's liberal-arts college in NY, and when I asked him why, he said "That's where my girlfriend went and she liked it a lot. The campus is really pretty and rural, and yet you're only a short train ride from New York City." Sheeesh!

Fortunately, even as a high school junior I knew that my guidance counselor was NOT someone whose opinions were worth much. Unfortunately, not all young women are as self-confident (or maybe I should say headstrong!) as I was. I have no doubt that many girls are discouraged from even considering traditionally male fields of endeavor, by their families or by their high schools or even by their own circle of friends.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes -- my professors in the Civil Engineering Department were very encouraging from day one. In fact, several remain my good friends and mentors to this day. I was accorded equal treatment and equal respect with my fellow students who were men, and I was expected to do just as much of the manual labor on research projects -- good training for later field work during grad school and my early engineering assignments. After graduation, my professors strongly urged to continue my studies at the master's level, which I balked at initially, but eventually I did it. I don't think I would have taken that extra academic step without their continued encouragement and support.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have had the great fortune to work with some wonderful men AND women over the past 25 years, but predominantly men. I can't say that my gender has ever seriously affected my opportunities or experiences at work, although I missed out on a few tempting short-term overseas assignments because there were no facilities or accommodations available for women.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No. I have consistently been promoted as fast or faster than my male colleagues, and I have received my fair share of big raises and bonuses. By and large I've worked by the golden rule: you do your job well and treat others with respect, and they in turn will do their jobs well and treat you with respect. On the rare occasion that I find someone's attitude or comments disturbing, I confront the individual (in private, of course) and we work it out. If a truly obnoxious individual were to start trouble with me that I could not resolve on my own, I know I could go straight to my boss and he would either fix the situation or fire that individual.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think the biggest changes have been social rather than professional -- just the fact that there are so many more women engineers than there were 20 years ago, so that it's now possible to associate in the workplace with other women who think the same way you do. For the most part I think it is a change for the good. Diversity among employees usually results in more creativity within the organization, which in turn expands the potential for making some real engineering breakthroughs as opposed to doing the same old rehashed stuff. The one potential downside is that working mothers do tend to bring more of their personal lives into the workplace, and this can occasionally affect overall productivity as well as office morale -- especially as the percentage of "Mommies" increases relative to your overall staffing level and workload.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
This was not really a factor at any point in my life. I enjoy my membership in SWE because it provides me with interesting field trips and the company of like-minded women, but I can't say it's helped me professionally at all. Then again, I think some people can take more advantage of networking opportunities than others -- I guess I'm just not very skilled at social politics. It seems like it must work for other people, at least that's what I'm always reading about in the magazines.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it! And don't be discouraged by your first year of courses -- the curriculum gets much more interesting and more fun as you get closer to graduation. If you stick with it, you will be able to write your own ticket to jobs that offer new opportunities and challenges every day, many of which will involve field work and meetings or conferences in cool faraway places. (As the old saying goes: a bad day in the field beats a good day in the office, hands down!)
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There was one woman professor in my department (out of 10). She was very sharp and professional, but I wouldn't say that I regarded her as any more of a role model than some of my male professors. I joined the student chapter of the Society of Women Engineers as a sophomore and learned a little more about the accomplishments of women scientists and engineers through them -- but I think it's important to note that my professional role models have always been engineers who accomplished great things, regardless of gender, and thus far there are still more men in that camp than women. However, some of the women in the SWE professional chapter were very inspiring and helpful to us students, and many are still my friends now that I am a member of the professional chapter myself. I didn't take any courses on women's history.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
My husband and I have no children. It is my perception (albeit a generalized one) that women with small children are more easily distracted by problems on the homefront -- they spend more time on personal calls and personal business during the workday than the men with small children. The woman still ends up being the primary caretaker even if she is also the CEO of a company, and unfortunately, her colleagues have to cover for her and absorb part of her workload whenever the job takes second place. If I had children, I would quit my job in order to raise them, in part to avoid the family-work conflicts that I observe in my colleagues -- the more you juggle, the more likely it is that something's going to come crashing down on you. I wouldn't be able to stand the stress of trying (and failing) to do both things according to my own high standards. I love my work, but ultimately I believe the proper raising of children is more beneficial to our society -- and on a more personal level, I wouldn't want my children being brought up by strangers.

So if I HAD started a family in my 20s or early 30s, I guess I would just now be starting to explore career options again -- and it would be almost impossible to take up where I left off, since technology changes so fast. I'd probably end up going back to school, at least to shake the rust out, but quite likely to pursue something different altogether.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have generally worked on project teams of six or less, with considerable time spent working alone balanced by regular meetings, coordination, and close interactions with other people, including a lot of public presentations and forums. Twice in my life I have been part of much larger workgroups, your basic bureaucratic "cubicle farms" within very large hierarchical line organizations, but I really didn't enjoy the professional and interpersonal dynamics of that type of environment. I much prefer individual (but not isolated) work assignments and the thrill of working with small, highly focused teams where everyone is willing to drop their egos at the door in order to pool their talents and solve the problems at hand.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1997


Submitted April 8, 2003, 12:37 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. My biggest support came from my father. He told me no matter what my interests, be the doctor not the nurse, be the pilot not the stewardess. I have always had an aptitude for math and sciences. He encouraged me to pursue engineering because of larger career opportunities.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I did not get any close attention from college professors. I attended UCLA. The class sizes were large. My professors did not seek out individuals in undergraduate programs.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I started in a mid-sized company with some great male mentors. Very strong technical project leaders and engineers on their own merits. They helped me during the initial difficult period transitioning from college to career. I have kept in touch with them throughout my career.

I worked for 6 years out of college. Then took 5 years off to have 2 children. 100% domestic. No interaction with my engineering life. Then I went back. My husband and I switched roles. He became, and still is the stay at home dad.

When I started in the early 80s, there were lots of areas where women were not commonly found as electrical engineers. Now, however within the teams of people I work with it is not uncommon. In the early years, it was most difficult to deal with men who were older. They were not accepting of the idea of having women engineers working with them side by side. However, male engineers of my age did not have the same discriminatory attitude.

Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I have not been limited in positions or career paths because I am female. But I have always very hard to get promoted or achieve goals. I believe that anyone who is willing to put in the hard work will be equally rewarded, man or woman.

There is a funny story about a female jealously problem. In a previous role, I was promoted to a high level manager (Director of Engineering). The only person in the company who had any negative feelings was the female HR manager. She felt that I was too inexperienced for the position. But I think she was jealous that I climbed the management ladder quickly.

Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Because women are appearing as professionals in all areas of our society, there is definitely less pressure to prove that you are as good as any man. But my career spans 25 years. It certainly was different when I started. I felt I had to do more to prove that I was equal or better. I suppose women who are starting out now as engineers, do not have the same hurdles or mindsets to change.


How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
In high school, there were lots of girls interested in math and sciences. I never felt out of place. It seemed to be 50 50 in high school in my math and science classes. My high school teachers always encouraged girls and boys.

During my 3rd year of college, I transferred to UCLA from a smaller UC campus. I didnt know anyone. My first quarter another women happened to be in every one of my classes. We became fast friends. She was very influencial to me. Nearly every class we took, we were the only females. It relieved some of the stress of being different or odd.

What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Take on tasks and projects that push and challenge you. This is the best way to show yourself and your team that you are able to meet these job demands, regardless of your gender.

Secondly, combine your math and science skills with a subject that interests you. For example, if you have an interest in aerospace, pursue a position in that field. Or perhaps it is oceanography, there are lots of positions in that field regardless of your education.

Be the doctor, not the nurse. Be the pilot, not the stewardess.

When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No role models. There were no classes on history of women in sciences.

This subject has been of interest to me starting in my 30s. I read independently to satisfy my curiosity.

In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Because I have a supporting husband at home who raises my children, I am available for travel, long hours or other demands that might affect single mothers or those with primary care responsibilities.

I think that you can take 3 different roles as a man or woman that combines family and work.
1. 100% commitment to work. Travel at anytime or place. Work long hours when needed. Rely on spouse or other to be primary care giver to children. Arrange vacations around work commitments.
2. 80% committed to work. Arrange travel to meet the needs of the family. Bring work home. But make family events ahead of work needs. Attend school functions or recitals, even taking time away from work. Arrange vacations around family needs.
3. 50% commitment to work. Part time. Or take a lesser role or position. Family is first. Work is second.

When you choose one of these modes, your career will be affected by your commitment. This is not true for engineers or scientists only. You can apply this rule to other careers.

One other thing to add, is that I have always selected full-time positions at a stable company. I could have taken on roles as an independent consultant. But the work is not always available. Because I have been the primary wage earner in our family, I would not take a risky or unstable role.

Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I had several positions over my career. But I do tend to stay a long time, if I am satisfied with the job. I have been at my current company for 8.5 years. The people are great and I have done several projects to keep it fresh and interesting.

I like to work with teams. Strong individual contributors, working on a difficult task.

What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
81


Submitted April 29, 2003, 12:13 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No, I can recall very few science roll models in middle school, except for one math teach who threw mad balls at boys, she was very cool. In high school I had a great math teacher who encouraged me to take more math, in college my first math class was taught by a women, who was very helpful. I think having women prof. and teachers helped me feel comfortable with math.

Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
yes, I recived my encouragement to persue a degree in statistics from both male and female college prof.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I'm not done yet
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
occsionaly I feel annoyed when I am in an all male enviroment and they make sexsit jokes, it's as if they don't value the women they are mocking, and in effect me.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think there are more oppurtuinitys for women now, I also think men resent that
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I think the network of friends I have devolped has helped immesly both men and women
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
go for it, and expect to feel alone at times, expect to have mean constantly ask you why the art/business gils won't date them, and trust that someday you'll walk into a room and feel totally comfortable and appricaited.

When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I wish they had offered more courses on women in science. I have had about 3 women math teachers here which is too few. One of them is the best teachewr I have ever had, both male and female student flock to her class.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I don't have any family, although I find I am called upon to help out more then my brother is although I attend a more demanding school.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I enjoy working individually
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)



Submitted August 19, 2002, 4:14 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, I was encouraged by my parents who thought I could do anything that I wanted to do. In school I was always supposed to be on a track to go to college. I attended an all girls (Catholic) school and there was no sexual discrimination during that part of my education.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I went to college with the goal of pursuing the study of science with the vision of myself in a lab. I had no clear idea of a career and none developed during college. I became a research assistant at a medical school and gradually develoed the plan to carry out my own research instead of doing work for someone else. After a few years I entered graduate school planning to do something consequential in my career as a scientist but still without an idea of what that would be.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My career as a scientist and educator has had it's ups and downs. Early on in the PhD program some male graduate students refused to go out on the boat with me because of my sex. Fortunately, my major professor was indiferent to gender and many other students became my very good colleagues. My problem early on was that I choose to proceed in an unconventional manner to work in science and for many years that set me back. I choose the place I wanted to work and live and not the other way around so it was not easy. Very late in life I have finally reached a position of authority and respect- along with that comes high pay. So though I do regret any day of my life, I have lost years of comparable salary and influence on policy. I think that few men would have done it my way.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I cannot recall exactly where I did not have access to the same oportunities, but I had a general feeling that I was not mentored in the same way because I was a woman.In working relationships with men there is often a lack of respect for the opinions and asperations of women. Of course there is also a certain amount of sexual inuendo from some men and fatherly treatment (I will take care of you/your problem/etc.) from others. At my first scientific presentation I felt very out of place in a "good ol boys" system. In time I learned that much of this was my feeling and I could easily join any situation by being outgoing and sure of my self. In general my career has not been hampered or helped by gender based bias.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think opportunities are probably better for women in science now. There are many more role models and avenues to pursuit. Recently I have been promoted to a head position and many people are proud to see a woman in this role. It was written up in the local newspaper so it is still rare or it would not be news.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I was very fortunate to have a woman scientist on my PhD advising committee. She provided insight into the role of women in academia that I never got from the male advisors including my major professor. There were few women to network with early in my career- now I find them very important. Only recently have I worked with women scientist and I treasure this. It is really different working with other women since we share so much more about life, politics and our roles in science. My guess is that it would be invaluable in any woman's scientific development.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it! You can do any thing you want. Have your children early if you want a tenure tracked position. Don't worry about gender just be the best you can be. Find a womaen's group in the field you are in and share experiences.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, I do not remember any women in science at that level. In high school all my teachers including the science teachers were women so I had several role models- except that they were nuns!
I never had a class or learned much about women in science except for the few very well accepted scientists like Madam Curie. Early in graduate school I was very impressed with Jane Goodall who came to the University to speak about her work with chimpanzees. Her work and the exciting happenings at this time of the first Earth Day influenced my interest in ecology.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I choose not to raise a family because the time was never right. I think this remains a serious question for women in science. Many female graduate students ask me about when thay might plan on children.When is the best time during their career development.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked with a colleague for most of my career. I always prefer to work as a team because I think so much more can be accomplished. I never had the opportunity to work with a female colleague but I think that would have been very productive.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1976


Submitted May 2, 2003, 4:56 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was encouraged to pursue all of my interests, from the sciences to the arts. My parents were both in academia--they neither encouraged me nor discouraged me to pursue an academic career, but I certainly knew the benefits and disadvantages of academia far before I ever chose a college major.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
The professors who mentored me in the lab were supportive of my pursuing a career in science.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I went to graduate school (in biology) with an open mind toward future careers. The standard PI career had some appeal, but I was also interested in "alternative" careers, such as science writing and policy. I soon decided that bench work was not for me and that the standard research track did not fit with the type of life I wanted to lead. After debating whether to continue in graduate school, I gritted my teeth and followed through, completing my PhD in a little over 4 years. I am now a AAAS Science Policy Fellow at the NIH and very happy with my current position. My research advisors strongly encouraged me to continue in science research, but the nature of the work and the career track did discourage me to some degree. I have found NIH to be a very supportive environment and more conducive to balancing work/personal life than academia.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Soon after beginning graduate school, I was shocked to discover that most biologists do not complete their training (PhD plus postdoctoral) until their late 30s. I think this is a problem across the board, but raises particular difficulties for women. But to be fair, I never felt that I was denied opportunities because I am a woman.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
It's too early in my career to say.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I had an AWIS mentor in graduate school who was just dynamite. She was an entrepreneur, the CEO of a biotech start-up. Her advice on how to navigate political situations in graduate school and how to network during a job search was invaluable.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Follow your heart, but always keep your eyes open to politics of your current situation and the career you are pursuing.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were several women who were professors in my department in graduate school, including my thesis advisor. These women were stars in their field, but the ones with young families did not appear to have an easy time balancing work and their personal lives. Most of the postdoctoral fellows in my lab were women, and all of them were over the age of 30. At the time, none of them had children.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I'm not raising a family now, but I do value having a life outside of work. This certainly affected my choice of jobs--I don't want to be working 80-hour weeks, whether in academia or in another environment.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I much prefer to work as a member of a team. As a graduate student, I set up long-term and short-term collaborations, and as a Policy Fellow, my job is highly interactive.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
2001


Submitted May 2, 2003, 5:52 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was neither encouraged nor discouraged. My family couldn't help me after the 7th grade or so with math or science, and I think they thought I was kind of odd, but nothing more than that. My grandmother used to play arithmetic games with me when I was younger; sometimes when I need an anecdote about why I went into math I tell that story. I always liked card games, too.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, there were several professors who were quite supportive, mostly in encouraging me to pursue opportunities. I never would have though of going to graduate school without their guidance. One professor really treated me as a colleague and we worked on and published hard results together. Incidentally, all of these professors were men. I had no women math professors in college.

In the beginning of my college studies, I was told by a "advisor" who was assigned to me, before I declared a math major, to take organic chemistry over the summer at a small school at home because it was "too hard" at Duke. This was the only bit of "discouragement" that I received.

Something else that was important to me -- when I was in the 11th grade, I was selected to attend the New Jersey Governor's School in the Sciences. Only two students from my school were invited to apply to attend this month long camp. It was the first time I was singled out as a star and it really made a difference to me. I still run into my friends from this program in the scientific community.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After my bachelor's degree, I immediately entered a Ph.D. program in mathematics. I finished the program in five years and accepted an NSF-NATO postdoc at a university in Canada for one year. At the same time as I received the NSF-NATO award, I was offered a 3-year instructor position at Rice University. Rice generously agreed to hold my position for me for one year, so I went to Canada and then to Rice in Houston.

During my last year in graduate school, the year I spent in Canada, and my first year or two at Rice, I began to feel more and more dissatisfied with my career. I enjoyed teaching, however, I felt the research problems I was working on were increasingly narrow and obscure, and I found the academic environment to be isolating and competitive. I wanted to work on problems with a broader focus in a collaborative environment, and it seemed like the math department at a university was not the place to do this. I felt that I had many skills that were not valued and I felt that my colleagues focused only on their individual research and never on the department, university, or community as a whole.

Hence, I explored other options. I quit my job in the math department one year before my contract ended without another position lined up. It was scary but kind of fun and very empowering to do that! I highly recommend it.

Over the next year and a half, I worked at the technology transfer office at the university and did some intellectual property consulting for a biotech start up company. I also coordinated the development of a new master's program in three scientific fields.

Then, I applied for AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellowship. I knew that scientists could do "things in Washington" but I had no idea what, and this seemed like a good way to learn. I was awarded the fellowship and have been housed in the Division of Graduate Education at the National Science Foundation since September. It has been wonderful -- I have learned a ton about science policy, how decisions get made, educational processes, funding, and scientific concerns across the board. My fellowship ends in four months and I am currently looking for a programmatic or policy type position here in Washington. I am very happy that I came to DC and think it was a great move.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No -- there was never anything that I really wanted to do that I couldn't do. I am lucky!

I do feel that most men "tolerate" the academic environment better than most women I know. It seems like men can just put their head down and do their work and not care so much what the environment is like. Of course, this breeds future professors who are likely to be replicas of the ones who have gone before them -- is this what we want? I tried very hard to find an academic environment that I liked, and when I could not do that I left for greener pastures. Voting with my feet, as they say.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think I'm to young to say!
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very important, and more so as I get older! It is very very important to network -- both for friendships and for professional reasons. You never know where you will end up and who might be helpful.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Make sure you really want to do it, because it is hard, pay is not that good, and it will take you a long time to be in graduate school. If you love it and really want to do it, then go at it with everything you have. However, if you are not sure whether you would like to go to grad school, then wait a year and make the decision later when you have stronger feelings.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Nope - none of these.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
This is not applicable to me.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1998


Submitted February 10, 2003, 6:04 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No. I was also a "smart ass" in school, being fairly bored with much of what I was presented in class. Even though I took the high level classes, I did not feel challenged, nor do I remember being encouraged to pursue Math and Science careers. In fact, I was told to go into teaching.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No, too many students in the freshman level and even sophomore level classes. It wasn't until I got pregnant, married, dropped out of school, got divorced, and went back to school that I felt encouraged to pursue my eventual scientific tract.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
While my coworkers are very supportive of advancing my career, it is the managers who have been a grave hindrance. I am now completing a settlement with my employer regarding assault, battery, and false imprisonment in the workplace, low salary, retaliation, and numerous unprofessional and unjust actions taken against me. This has cost me 7 years of my life and a large attorney fee. It is totally unnecessary and certainly not productive.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No particular event stands out in my mind. I just know that it exists and continues to exist, even at a National Laboratory. Additionally, I am not being compensated for my second advanced degree, because the HR department cannot figure out how to address that issue. It is a nontraditional degree, held by far more women than men. If diversity is truely sought after, then the HR department needs to address nontraditional degrees. And, you need to include it in your list of options below...hmmmmm...
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
They are getting better, but I think because I am banging my head against a brick wall so often. Eventually, I know the wall will fall. And besides, it helps me lose weight...think of all those calories I am burning with this "exercise".
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I only gained a support network in my present location. There are many women here who have suffered as I have. Knowing that I am not alone gives me great comfort. And, I have met lots of really interesting women.


What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Don't let the jerks get you down. To be more positive, believe in yourself, your integrity, your purpose. You will make it just fine. It may, however, not be the way in which you envisioned your path...so be flexible and ready to embrace new things. As my father said shortly before he died, "Life is too short. Enjoy it while you can!"
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, but the men that were my professors the second time around were very encouraging and understanding. They helped alot.

Unfortunately, there were very few women in my field, even to this day. There were no classes on the history of women in science and engineering. I have, however, learned a great deal about women in science and engineering as a member of the Women's Diversity Working group at my National Laboratory and as a member of Women in Science.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, as a single parent, with three children, and working full time, there was no way I could go for my PhD. so I went for the lesser degree, an Ed.S. I plan very much so to go on for the PhD, but will wait until my youngest is out of school. Also, some of those "wonderful" managers, are less than sympathetic when family issues arise. Often I am forced to decide "family" vs. "work". What they do not understand is that if my family is fine, then I am far more productive at work. Also, science isn't just done between 8 and 5....
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer being a member of a team. I am not one who likes to "toot my horn" as men love to do. I think this is a female weakness, but I really don't know how to overcome my unwillingness to broadcast myself. I do like being a team member. It does give me a large sense of satisfaction when our team succeeds.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Don't know / can't remember
1991


Submitted April 29, 2003, 3:04 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
It was really neither -- I can't say I was outwardly encouraged or discouraged to enter into a scientific or applied sciences. However, I was always told and couraged to be whatever I wanted and that I could do and be anything I wanted, so in that sense, I would tenatively say 'yes.'
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I never really talked much with my (undergrad) professors. As a graduate student, the professors were all helpful and provided advice, but since I was already working full-time in the field I was getting my Masters degree for, I really didn't seek much encouragement.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My first real job after getting my bachelor's degree was a joke. But, I then moved to D.C. and found a wonderful job as a Research Assistant in a HR company and they very much encouraged me to attain my Master's degree. In fact, they really encouraged everyone who worked there. This was probably done more because they wanted as many PhD's on staff as possible, but either way, it sure helped me.

Once I started working towards my Masters, I was given many opportunities to put that knowledge to use. I also worked with many 'big guns' and had many people to bouce ideas of off or to ask their opinion about any studies I was currently working on.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
More often than not, there's really not much of a gender-bias in I/O Psych. If anything, women are beginning to take over. Just as many women were managers as men, and I never once felt that I didn't get to work on a project or deal with a client because I was a women.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Honestly, it's still too early in my career to say. So far, it appears that the field is wide open.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I'd say they were non-existend during high school and undergrad, but during graduate school, it really helped to have other colleagues and professionals to help me and give me advice along the way.

I know I could have done it without them, but it sure made it easier having that support.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If at all possible, try to get experience in what it is that interests you. Or if that isn't possible, take classes in something that sounds interesting, or even maybe classes that may be fun.

I found that I loved research by taking a required course in research methodology. Prior to that, I didn't even realize all of the complexities of research and how much fun it was collecting data.

Don't listen to anyone who thinks you'll have a hard time breaking in because you're a women. It will be hard only if you believe that.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I had a few prominent professors who were women, and did quite well in the field. I don't know if I'd consider then rol models, but they were well-respected.

I never took any classes on any women's studies or history. And most any classes of mine that did deal with the past history of my science (Industrial/Organizational Psychology) touched upon any women who did contribute, althought those were very few and far between.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
That's a tough one. Mainly for the fact (and especially at this time in my life), I have no want to raise a family. However, I can say that at the HR job, it was never explicitly stated, but leaving work for family-related reasons was looked down upon. I wouldn't say they were family UNfriendly, but it was quite apparent that most everyone who worked there either had grown children or no children. I believe the scientists and doctors I worked with tended to 'self-select' out of raising a family for their career.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
If given a choice, I'd rather work alone -- unless I get to chose my team members. Otherwise, I see nothing wrong with doing the 'traditional' team thing of where one person kind of runs the show, the rest are given assignments, and we all meet once in a while to touch base. That way, you still have other people helping towards a common goal, but you may not have to necessarily work hand-in-hand with them.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2003


Submitted May 21, 2004, 12:25 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I grew up in a rural area where sports were more important than science. I did have a female biology teacher that was instrumental in fostering my interest in science. I did not find out until I went to college how limited my science education was, and how far behind I was. I started out in engineering, and in my freshman physics class, my entire high school classes were covered in the first week. After that I was lost, while most of the other students were still bored. I had to drop out of engineering eventually because I did not have the proper background to keep up with the pace of the coursework, even though I was a National Merit Scholar and scored very high on my SATs.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I believed that I received support in graduate school, although I felt it was definitely different that the support the males in my lab received. The guys could "pal around" and talk sports with the lab head, and I felt they received the projects that would help their careers, while I was given the "bread and butter" projects, not the kind that would help me be competitive for grant money later. When I mentioned this once to my advisor, I was told that the men would have to support families someday and they needed the extra help. It was even worse in my postdoctoral labs. In one lab, the men all had technicians and students (generally females) to perform experiments for them, while the women were supposed to "help each other." This resulted in the women being chained to the lab bench and not able to spend time developing contacts like the men. I was with a senior woman doing a sabbatical. She had published many papers in top journals. We wanted to perform some new experiments and told the lab head that we were going to seek help from another senior lab head. He became very upset and said "when you go and talk to these people you have to know what you are doing," and strongly discouraged us from doing so. A younger male fellow in the lab had been "introduced" to this same senior scientist and was taught several techniques in that lab. I left that lab and tried to find another that was better for women, but could never find another advisor that was interested in women other that having them do bench work for them. I have subsequently left science altogther (and so has the woman that was doing the sabbatical).
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have to say that the people I interacted with, while not always overtly discouraging, were not very encouraging either. Everyone had their own agenda, and most of the time it was furthering their own career, even at the expense of the people who came to them for training and help.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I was very hopeful at the end of graduate school. Even though I did not have the "big" papers that the men in the lab had, I had published five papers in good journals and felt I had as good of a start as anyone. I believe that this was because I worked for a younger professor who was trying to establish himself and as long as you could do the experiments, he would give you all the work you could handle. I started to feel the "frost" when I first applied for postdoctoral positions. Even though I had published good papers and came from a well-known lab, I found that I did not receive the type of treatment that the male graduate students had. They were offered many things, jobs for their wives, fellowships, etc. They were asked what type of projects they wanted to do when they got there. When I was not offered these things and asked about them, I was told that "this will all happen after you get here." Usually, after I got there, there was some urgent project that needed to be done, so I was given a lot of work to do up front, and not allowed to sit around and think up projects like the men. I began to feel like a technician.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think the opportunities for some women are better than they were. I am talking about women who attended top level graduate programs right out of high school. For women who have come late to the game, or have not been very "smart" in their choices of school and mentors, the best you can hope for is to be a senior scientist or having a small research program at a small college. I realize that this is OK for many women, but I would have liked to feel that I had a chance at running a bigger lab and becoming an influential person in science. I definitely feel that I was discouraged in doing that in many ways.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Most of the women I knew that managed to succeed were somehow connected to the male network as a wife, daugher, or "friend" of a powerful male colleague. They were part of a "package" when they obtained their postions. I do not feel that they could identify with a woman that had a husband in another profession and was not as integrated into the life of the university as they were. Many published with their husbands or attended meetings and dinners with them, so they were automatically included in the structure. Also, they could at least trust their husbands as team members who were interested in developing their career as well.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
I found science itself very exciting and wonderful at first, when I was a younger graduate student and had not seen how the world of academia really worked. At first, I could not understand many of the women that I met that were discouraged and unhappy. I felt that they were not cut out for science, or being unreasonable. I have since come to feel that these women were unhappy because they must have come across the same barriers I had. I made the tough decision to get out because I had another option. I couldn't work in science as a second-class citizen, and didn't know how to change it for the better, as I had no power and did not know any woman that did and was willing to risk their position to speak up about it. I was hoping to get to a level where I could have some influence, but eventually felt it was hopeless. I have no doubt that women make excellent scientists and are just as ambitious and creative as their male counterparts, but would counsel young women to think seriously about the type of environment they are about to enter.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I met many women that were farther up the ladder than me along the way. Some were nice but overwhelmed, some were bitter and disillusioned, many of the "successful" women appeared to view me as a competitor for a very limited space and could be very nasty. Most of the women students and postdoctoral fellows I met while in training are no longer in science or are in non-faculty positions. Many of the faculty were assistant professors that never got tenure. I do not know one woman that has received an assistant professorship offer at a "good" institution or has obtained tenure anywhere.
As I got further along, I felt more and more alone.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I did not raise a family during the time I was a graduate student or a postdoc, but not because I did not think I could handle both. Most of the women I knew seemed like they could handle things pretty well, especially if they had a husband in the same position that would help. I did know of one woman postdoc that had a premature baby, had to take a considerable amount of time off, and when she came back, her project, which she had painstakingly done the initial work for, had been given to another male fellow by the lab head, because it was "too competitive to leave for that long". This project eventully led to a lot of top papers and a faculty position for the guy, while the woman left that lab and is still working as a senior postdoctoral fellow seven years after obtaining her degree.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
It seemed like I was always expected to be a "team member" instead of being allowed to develop my own work in order to be competitive for a faculty position. I also had a very bad experience in which a team member took reagents and cells that took a long time to develop from me without my knowledge and used them for his own experiments. When I complained to the lab head, I was told that I should just give them to him, and was made to feel bad because I was not "helping" him. I would have preferred to work in a team as it is more productive, but found that there was always some male "star" that I was supposed to be "helping" at the expense of my own career.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1995


Submitted August 9, 2002, 2:14 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, the assumption of my secondary school education (independent girl's day school) was that I would pursue a professional career and that I could do what ever I wanted, it only took my own effort. I also had a good role model in my grandmother, who was a college professor and who had earned her PhD in physiology/nutrition in the 1920's. My parents also encouraged me to pursue science and provided the financial support for my education. Conversely, although I had excellent math and science teachers, the curriculum at my school was strongly biased towards languages and literature and I found myself boxed in taking 2 languages and no science as a sophomore in high school because I would not receive credit for my 1st year of Latin if I did not take the second. Also, only 3 years of mathematics (no calculus) was offered at my school. In retrospect, I am glad I had the Latin, but what I wanted was both.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, my undergraduate advisor in geology was supportive and encouraged me to go to graduate school. However, I had no idea that I was supposed to cultivate relationships with my professors, basically I was extremely naive about what happens in the real world.

In graduate school, my naivity continued, but my thesis advisor got me the introduction for my first job.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I am an engineering geologist working with essentially the same firm (going through several acquisitions and mergers and name changes) for the past 24 years. I have been relocated from North Carolina, to California, and now to Washington State. I spend approximately 40 to 80 percent of my time out of town on assignments that range from one day to two years. I am essentially a senior technical specialist with only limited management responsibilities. Overall I think I received good encouragement to pursue my career, especially from my immediate supervisor.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
The first time was in 1982, 2 of us junior staff were sent out of town on a coal exploration job. I was surprised when my 1 year junior male colleague was "in charge". Our personalities were extremely different and the other person always put himself forward and I never did. I think it is a subtle gender issue. The person in charge needs to take charge and I have to do that conciously.

The more overt situation was for an assignment in Alaska in 1983, my management wanted to send me there as the person most suitable for the job, but the on-site management kept rejecting me saying my experience wasn't appropriate (and back and forth it went rewriting resumes). In the end another person went and did not do well, I replaced him and stayed for the remainder of the job - 8 months. The formerly unaccepting site management asked for me on several later projects.

I think that I have been minimally impacted by gender descrimination. Ususally, it occurs in situations where, I really don't want to pursue the option because I don't want the additional stress of management or business development responsibilities. The door is closed, but not locked. I could have gone there if I truely wanted to.

Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
They go up and down with the economy of the engineering and construction business. Our business niche has contracted substanially, I used to have several junior staff to supervise, now we have no junior staff.

There was a major improvement in the mid to late 80's because of the expansion of the hazardous waste remediation work. A lot of women moved into more responsible and visible positions in my profession.

Also I work with a lot of contractors and on construction sites. The overall atmosphere is much easier to deal with now compared to 25 years ago.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Not a factor in school. I do find them useful and enjoyable now.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If you like it, do it, there are many opportunities for reward, but don't expect to get rich.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I only encountered one woman scientist in my 6 years of college/university. She was embroiled in a tenure battle in which sex discrimination was a major issue. At the time, I didn't like her, thought she was a lousy teacher and I felt she just made trouble. Now, I appreciate the battles she fought - the notorious one to get a bathroom for women on all floors of the building(we made up 50% of the students)and all the ones I don't know about.

No classes in the history of women in science and engineering.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes. We have two women geologists in our office, I have no children, the other has two children. I get all the long term out of town jobs away from my husband for months at a time. I probably have more job security because I am flexible with respect to travel.


Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like to work on a team with my own area of responsibility. I like to have professional dialogue about my work to find the best approach.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
78


Submitted August 19, 2002, 9:43 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Not really encouraged or discouraged. There were not many female scientist or technical role models back then but I do not ever recall being steered away from technical courses in school.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I was in the first class of women to attend the US Naval Academy. We had to pursue engineering. Were professors hoping we would fail miserably and did some of them sometimes grade females unfairly in order to prove their premise that women can't do this... you betcha! Thankfully they were the minority and did not get their way.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Generally steered toward the administrative side of every project.

Not taken seriously or given the respect of others of similar experience and capability

Paid at a lower level then male counterparts - even those with less experience and capabilities.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Throughout. When I applied to the Naval Academy I was turned down because "girls" were not eligible for entry. Throughout I faced pay discrimination. At one point I was told it was this way because every time a women became a critical element to a corporation or a project, she decided to go on a leave of absence or quit to have children.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes it has changed. It really is not a big deal anymore. There are a lot of women out there and so the novelty has definitely worn off. No one is surprised to see a woman in that role and no one has any concerns about their ability based upon gender.

The lingering problem remains women are seen as "doing this until they have a family" So upward mobility and the choice jobs are often still outside their reach. I feel for the young women coming up who continue to face the glass ceiling because of the fear that they will up and leave you in the lurch when their mother-instinct kicks in
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Not at all
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
I don't think that is any more difficult today than any other field. The business glass ceiling is no lower for scientists and engineers as for any other business professional woman trying to get ahead. All women create the same fear in corporate america... will they decide to have babies or feel guilt about leaving their babies and leave. Am I wasting my time and money mentoring a young woman - are they serious professionals or just killing time until motherhood kicks in.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Very few women encountered at all
There were no classes offered on the history of women in any capacity let alone science and engineering
No, we did not learn about the accomplishment of women scientists/engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I felt like I paid for the sins of every women that left the work force to have a family....
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer working as a team. I have worked with some of the same people for about 5 years....
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1989


Submitted August 26, 2002, 5:43 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Not really. I don't recall being either encouraged or discouraged. I was a big sci-fi fan and my older brother (by 9 years) nurtured me a bit in science and math.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes -- I was recognized me as a good student and therefore given encouragement academically. One professor in particular encouraged me to seek a graduate degree.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After completing my bachelor's degree I went on to a Master's program -- largely because my boyfriend knew that that was what he wanted to do, so I decided to do the same. My work was always somehow associated with my education (i.e., T.A., R.A., etc.).
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I only experienced this once I became a faculty member at Harvard. It was not so much that I was prohibited from doing certain things or not given the same opportunities as my male colleagues. It was more a question of the academic atmosphere, which was rather alienating. I was the only woman in our department. I felt left out of much decision making and that my opinion was not important.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes. I felt that my opportunities decreased the further up the academic ladder I went. As I said above, I never felt any discrimination until I entered a faculty position in a high-stakes environment. In the end I received tenure at Harvard, but decided to leave for several reasons, one of which was the environment.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I never belonged to or used any networks until I became a faculty member at Harvard. Then it was VERY important (especially networking with women science faculty in other departments).
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it! Overall it's been a very rewarding experience. I love what I do.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were none. No classes were offered on the history of women in science. No.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
It didn't affect the type of work that I did, but certainly affected my ability to put in the hours!
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes. I like enjoy both types of work, but even when I work individually, I seek feedback from colleagues.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1988


Submitted August 20, 2002, 2:11 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Not exactly - I always enjoyed and performed well in
science and math courses, and was not discouraged from
that, at least until my last high school years. When
it came time for me to think about college and a major,
I expressed my interest in becoming a doctor to my high
school guidance counselor. He smiled and suggested that
I consider nursing instead. This was 1968, in a very
small Midwestern town and high school.

Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No - I went from a small rural high school (500
students) to a very large midwestern university (44000
students). My college classes were also large, and I
had no personal relationships with professors. Career
counseling was done only when the student sought it out.
And I sought it out only because I had to see a counselor
to change my major from pre-med to psychology. I had
placed into advanced level calculus and chemistry courses
based on testing, and I didn't adjust well from taking
classes which came easy to taking classes that were a
challenge. In the anonymous atmosphere of the university,
I found it easier to change my major than to seek help.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Several years after getting a BA in psych, I went back
to community college for a course in respiratory therapy
technology, both so that I could get a job and because
I was still interested in science/medicine. I worked
for 13 years as a respiratory therapist, became "burned
out" and went back to school again, this time getting a
Master of Science in Environmental Engineering. My pre-
med course work and respiratory course work was enough
to get me into the graduate engineering program. I
found I am still interested in and good at math and
science, and have now been working as an environmental
engineer with the Federal government for 11 years. The
government as an employer is very supportive of women
in science, in terms of career advancement and accomda-
ting having a family.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
When I entered engineering school (1989), I realized that
engineering is the career I probably should have pursued
as an undergraduate, since I love math. Ironically,
the university I attended as an undergrad is known for
its engineering school, but engineering was never
offered to me, either in high school or university by
the guidance people. I didn't even know what it was
until I went to grad school. The reason I chose
environmental engineering as a new career was that I am
an environmentalist and I knew that engineers can
usually get jobs. Imagine my surprise and pleasure to
find that engineering is applied math!
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, it has gotten better. As described above, when I
graduated from high school in 1968, certain opportunities
were not even offered, and I'm convinced it was because
I am a woman. Things seem much better now - I see
many women coming out of college with engineering degrees.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Not at all - there were no networks that I was aware of.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Definitely go for it. As part of my job I have the
opportunity to see environmental and engineering staff
in many different types of industrial facilities, from
small businesses to large industries like oil refining
big steel, and electric power plants. I have encountered
women on staff in all these places.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, no, and no.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I don't have children, but as I noted above, the Federal
government seems very supportive of women who want to
have a family.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
No. I work well in either situation, enjoy both.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1991


Submitted February 17, 2003, 11:02 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was always encouraged to succeed in academic
pursuits by both family and teachers. I did not focus
on science until high school, though I always loved
math and was encouraged in that area.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I was enrolled as a physics major, and I had very little
contact with professors outside of class. These were
all lecture-based, and so there was little interaction.
They were never particularly positive or negative -
there was no community at all.
My first postitive encouragement was from the professor
of an astronomy course I was taking as an elective. He
actively encouraged me to pursue graduate studies and
gave me some advice on how to prepare for graduate
school. The open and friendly nature of this encounter
as well as the excitement and growth in the science
(something I never felt about physics) were significant
factors in my decision to chose astronomy over physics.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
As a PhD student, my only other classmate was another
woman. We encouraged each other through the tough times
in graduate school, and our department clearly wanted
us to succeed. We had access to great opportunities
and were expected to seek a career in astronomy. There
were few senior women scientists, but many post-docs
and research associates, and the grad student ratio
was quite good (about 30%). The apparent friendliness
of the program as well as the substantial numbers
of women were significant reasons for me choosing astronomy
over physics (I applied to both types of graduate
programs).

Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I am at the postdoc phase right now, and I cannot
point to any particular events that have indicated
that I would not have access to the same opportunities
as my male colleagues. I am more concerned about the
next stage - finding and keeping a permanent job. At
that point, I think issues of balancing family
life with career will become more important. I have
been personally fortunate with my own two-body
situation, but I know for many this is a huge problem
that takes energy away from work and can contribute
significantly to dissatisfaction personally and
professionally.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
No, though I haven't been in this business for too long.
There is the general perception by other young
scientists that it's easier to
get on a short-list or get a job if you're a woman, but
I don't think the data bear this out.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Networks of women scientists have been
most important to me from the end of college through
to the present. I mostly count on them for
encouragement/advice rather than career networking -
there just aren't that many women (especially senior
ones) in my subfield.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Be stubborn and be professional. I think I stuck with
physics in undergrad out of sheer will once I saw I was
the only
woman in a couple of my classes. At that point, there
was no way I was going to quit. I also always assumed
that I was among the worst in my classes.
When I learned I wasn't, it was a pleasant surprise.
This is where networks of students are really helpful -
to give you some perspective as well as support.
As far as being professional, given the level of
immaturity of so many ``famous'' senior scientists,
this will serve you especially well as you develop
your career.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were very few women in senior positions, and I
would consider few of them to be role models. That
is, they were generally not people whom I would want to
emulate. Of course, this is true of most of the male
professors as well. I had much more support from a
community of students I met my last year in college.
One of them was a very accomplished and confident woman,
and she was more of a role model than any of the
professors. I never took a course in the
history of women in science, but it has been a casual
interest that I have pursued independently.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I think people with families (both men and women) tend
to work more efficiently than people without. Having
children (as opposed to just a partner) is certainly a
challenge, and I don't see how it can't affect your
career at least in the short term. The timing of
having a baby must be planned strategically and
significant support from your partner is essential.

Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
As an observer who primarily works with space
observatories, my projects tend to be collaborative.
On a day-to-day basis, I tend to work independently, but
I confer with colleagues regularly. I enjoy working
with others, but I prefer to be in charge of my own
projects. As a student, I definitely preferred
working with other students on problem solving.
Given the generally poor teaching in university
physics departments, these student networks were
essential.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
2002


Submitted October 21, 2002, 5:18 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. I was encouraged to puruse a career in the health care industry. Later in high school I discovered Chemistry and was encouraged to pursue a degree in Pharmacy. I took 4 years of math and science in high school. This encouragement came from my parents. My chemistry instructor in high school was also very encouraging. There was a Medical Science Club at my high school too. The most participants were girls.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Once in college I received minimal support. However my junior year I became disillisioned with Pharmacy and switched my major to Construction Management. This was in a smaller college at the University and therefore I then received more encouragement from my professors because they all knew me.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I received my bachelor's in Construction Management and MBA- Finance. I have pursued my career in construction management and over the past five years have concentrated on Real Estate Development, where I am now the Vice PResident of Real Estate Development at a large Real Estate and Construction Firm in Atlanta after graduating 12 years ago.

My first job out of college did not encourage me to pursue my career. However I left that firm after a year and had a more supportive enviornment to continue to pursue my career in my chosen field.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
After about 3 years after graduating. Even though I feel that I have done quite well, I think I could be even futher if I were a white male in my field. I feel they are given better opportunities for better jobs, better paying jobs, given more opportunities to advance, etc. They are also mentored better and given tips on how to get where they want or looked out for. Once mentor that I was excited about having, ended up making strong unwanted sexual advances towards me, thus ending my desire to be around that person and learn all I could.


Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I look at the women coming out of college now as engineers and/or construction managers and see that the workforce is a lot more accepting to them and they don't have as hard as time as I did or continue to have as I move up the ladder. However, I feel that I am making a better path for them and am warmed by seeing the increasing numbers.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I really did not network with women engineers in school. It would have been great if they reached out to us in college.

I have participated in "Power Lunches" in Milwaukee with the local AAUW chapter there. We speak to girls in grammar school about the importance of taking science and math. I have them read a scale on blue prints and build a lego project. Goes over big!
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If you are smart and excel you can do anything you want! Stick with the technical areas to have greater reward later in life.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
When in college I did not encounter any women I would consider as role models. I guess I basically relied on my mother that was a nurse and had to take many science classes. The semester I graduated from undergrad, she was graduating with her MBA.
I did not take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering nor did I learn about the accomplishments of women scientist/engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I can not answer this question as I am not married nor have children. But it does concern me as to what it will do to my career once I decide to go this route.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Both - depending upon scope. Real Estate Development and construction are team efforts.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1996


Submitted September 3, 2002, 1:41 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. In my family, it wasn't a question of whether or not we would go to college, it was a question of what we'd study and where we'd go. Both my parents had gone to college, but they were the first generation in their families to do so (Mom had been a farm girl in Wisconsin, speaking German until she was in grade school. Dad was a cowboy in Montana). They valued education, but even more, they believed that each person has a responsibility to make the most of their talents. So when I showed aptitudes in math and science, I was encouraged to pursue the development of those aptitudes. Mom and Dad believed that I could be whatever I wanted to be, and it didn't matter what traditional roles might dictate. However, the women in my childhood provided fantastic role models. Mom had been a Woman Marine during WW II, a neighborhood mother had been a Navy nurse, and another had been a flight instructor for the Army Air Corp. These women were all part of normal, lower middle income families. I grew up believing that these women were typical.

In junior high and high school, my teachers were very supportive. They had high standards, and they challenged all their students to perform. My math teacher got me into a summer math program at SMU in Dallas, my first trip alone away from home. When I decided my senior year to become a nurse instead of going into engineering, my science teachers expressed their disappointment but wished me well in my nursing career (I went back and got my engineering degree in my late 20's, having worked 9 years as a nurse). This wasn't in the 90's, it wasn't in the 80's, it was in 1973.

Beginning in junior high, in the late 60's, and through high school, my teachers had all expected me to go into math, science or engineering. This wasn't in a progressive, upper income area; the schools I attended were in lower to lower middle income areas. But all my teachers were very supportive. The only thing that kept me from going into engineering was my own idealism about helping people.

I get tired of people saying that the growth in women in the sciences is due to government regulations; it isn't true. Our mothers paved the way for us during WW II, and they gave us their dreams and their belief in our ability to do whatever we wanted to.

Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes. When I went back to school for my engineering degree, I was in my late 20's (it was the early 80's). Almost everyone of my professors was positive. After freezing on an exam and failing an organic chemistry test, the prof (who's wife was also going back to school), talked with me about unrealistic expectations that older students sometimes have, and how those expectations can lead to the kind of problem I'd run into.

The only place I ran into resistance, was from the admissions office. When I applied, the engineering school was resistent to "nontraditional" students. The dean of admissions told me I'd done no serious academic work since high school, in spite of a B.S. in nursing. Once I was admitted, none of my professors held the same opionion.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I worked with a Fortune 500 company for 14 years, and am now consulting.

When I started in the mid 80's, I'd gues women made up 5-10% of the engineers in the company. Women were being promoted beyond their capabilities just to show that the company wasn't discriminating. It was a mess. My male peers resented the discrimination they were experiencing. Thse high profile women were failing in a big way because they were pushed too far too fast, and every new woman engineer was looked at as most likely another unqualified failure waiting to happen. So most of the women were struggling to be "one of the guys" so they wouldn't stand out so much.

During my first few years as a field engineer, being a female was really a hindrance on the social front. I was working in the oil fields, and the communities were uncomfortable with single women professionals. I was not included in small social gatherings of my peers for several years. I felt isolated and lonely. Fortunately, I later connected with women engineers from other companies and developed strong and enduring relationships. Also, as I learned that I could use and/or initiate certain group activities which allowed me to socially interact with my male peers.

At work, I learned that much of the communication problem that I had encountered was not really an issue of men communicating differently than women, but it was that my social style was about 180 degrees differnt from most of my peers (if you're familiar with Meyers Briggs, most of the engineers at my company were INTPs, and I'm an ENFP). Once I realized that the difference in style was causing problems, I learned how to bridge that gap but still use my skills to encourage creative and innovative solutions.

By the mid 90's, there seemed to be enough women that we didn't feel like anomolies. The company was promoting the most qualified person. If a woman was promoted, nobody questioned her ability. The women had quit trying to fit the male model, and were willing to be different. I know I learned that I brought a unique perspective that helped me find new and different solutions.


From talking with peers, I think that my experiences reflect general industry trends.

Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No.

In fact, at one point a friend and I got tired of hearing women friends complain that men were getting ahead. So we initiated a study (first very informal and unauthorized, later more formal and authorized) of employee perceptions and expectations. Interestingly, we found that everybody felt discriminated against.

I've seen women succeed in some of the most intensely macho parts of the business (drilling oil wells). But I've also seen a disproportionate number of women shifted into the "softer" engineering sides of the business (e.g., environmental or safety). When I was shifted into environmental, I thought it was a death knell for my career, but it turned out to be a very liberating and empowering assignment.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Things have gotten better, primarily because women have hit a "critical mass" and because we've gotten comfortable with the way we fit in as women in engineering.


How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very important. We tend to gravitate to those who are most like us; we can share experiences and try to help one another resolve difficulties. I found it critical to have women friends who understood my experiences.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Figure out what you really like doing, and then do it. Be willing to pave a new path, if that's what it takes.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I had run into women engineers while I was working as a nurse, and I clearly ran into many women who were in scientific professions in the medical community. In college, I had at least 2 women instructors in engineering classes. Because I was close in age to both of them, we developed friendships that extended outside the classroom.

I doubt if I would have taken any classes on the history of women in science and engineering. I was interested in doing engineering, not in a social movement.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
My female peers clearly carry more of the responsiblity of family care than my male peers....regardless of work responsibilities. The women, therefore were more particular about ensuring that an assignment would allow them to meet those family needs. However, once respected women professionals started demanding, and receiving, accomodations, I also saw a few of the men starting to utilize some of the same accomodations to increase their family care involvement. Still, women seemed to feel freer to demand the accomodations, or to just quit working to meet family needs. In this respect, I think that companies discriminate against men; a man won't be allowed to pave the way in a new corporate accomodation for parenting needs....but a woman can.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I've done both. Working as part of a team can be really rewarding, energizing, and can result in some amazing synergies. However, nothing is as demoralizing as a dysfunctional team, even if it is composed of technically brilliant members. So, I prefre working with a good team, or by myself.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1986


Submitted August 15, 2002, 7:03 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
By my parents, yes. My father is a mech engr, I am a civil engr. My father always taught me how to use tools and fix things. All my grades were expected to be good, not just English, Social Studies, etc. My mother expected me to have a career in some profession (not firefighting. She thought girls wouldn't be strong enuf).
In HS, a couple boys said I could not go to RPI as it was a boy's school. That's where I went.

Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I didn't have much interaction with the engineering profs. The one time I asked for help from a professor, I was told maybe I should drop the class. Since it was a required class, that wasn't too helpful.

A civ eng prof did try to get me to stay on for grad school after my sr year.

The placement office was very supportive of all of us looking for jobs. I never felt they treated me better or worse than anyone else.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I've been in predominately male fields for a long time, but as I have switched to environmental engineering, I see many more women.

I worked in construction for a railroad and a power utility; 95% of the time I saw no other women in my chain of command. If there were women, they tended to be in Marketing or Accounting or Personnel or PR.

Most of the men I worked with were willing to help me in my career, but I was still not a part of the network. The blue-collar guys thought I was a novelty-they would let me operate machinery or practice welding, where with a male inspector, they would not have.

When I was younger, I didn't really notice I was alone. But I did get ticked off in my first job when a guy got a bigger raise than me because he had a family. That's what my boss told me when I complained about the fact I worked harder and smarter and got a lesser raise.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
One of my previous employers had a policy that inorder to be promoted, you had to be willing to move. Anywhere. Any time. My husband made significantly more than I did, so that wasn't an option for me. I was honest with my bosses, and said I would wait for an opening in my region. I waited 5 years and saw jerks promoted over me, even though no one wanted the NY area as I did.
The policy was promoted by guys who had stay at home wives, had had to move for their careers,and couldn't see that the world was changing.
Not playing golf also hurt me.
I left the company, to the chagrin of my immediate boss. He kept saying things would get better. i got tired of waiting.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think when I started, companies were searching for women. Then they weren't so hard up (Republicans in control). Then diversity became the word of the day.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Never had a network. SHould have developed one.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Make a difference-make things better for everyone who comes after you.

Enjoy your work-find something you really like-it's easier to be good at it if you like it.

NETWORK!!!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I can't remember any. The only female profs I remember were in the Humanities.
I got to know some women who were part of the first large class of women to attend RPI, but I don't think I considered them role models.

History of women? Are you kidding? We were trying to fit in, not stand out.

In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
It is so much harder for women with kids to compete. I had a hard enuf time making sure we had a dog-sitter to cover when we both traveled, much less trying to get a kid taken care of.
To have kids, I would have had to change jobs to one without travel. My husbnad wasn't about to give up his.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Individually.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
78


Submitted August 27, 2003, 3:10 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, my mother and grandmothers , and a scientist uncle encouraged me.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, in particular my chemistry teacher was supportive. She was a working mother.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I worked in private sector research, academia and public sector. These were some slowdowns and obstacles, but being a third generation working mother helped. I later became a Professional and Personal Effectiveness Coach which also helped me overcome resistence to women in science.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
In graduate school, the paths were beginning to split in careers when it came time to take a job in another city. As it turned out, my husband followed me to Washington, DC, and obtained a job within a year. He worked in another city in the interim and we have had what we call the "two city problem" three other times in 38 years of marriage.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Somewhat better now.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
They were important at all stages and several times lead to jobs.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I went to a Women's college so there were many women professors in the science departments. I graduated in '66 before there were many course on women in science. In my grad. school days I did several projects on women in science and read one biogarphy or autobiography per year of a woman or women in science, e.g., Margaret Mead, Ruth Benedict, Rachel Carson, Margaret Sanger, Jane Addams, Marie Curie, etc.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
During the first four years of my twins lives, I hired a nurse, and took an academic job and taught evenings, so there could be coverage in 3 child care shifts, AM, PM and evening.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have done both. I enjoy flexiplace and flexitime now, which means I work at home several days per week.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
86


Submitted August 12, 2002, 2:27 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
My parents were both science/math oriented
(math and physics background) so science was strongly
encouraged in my household. Some of my science teachers
were very encouraging, and others were very discouraging.
I dealt with many sexist comments and put-downs
throughout my science classes from middle school on up.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, very much so-- most of my college professors (while all male)
were very encouraging in helping me to pursue science,
as well as help with setting up opportunities to advance
my experiences in the sciences.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I'm not sure I understand what this question is asking--
do I feel supported in my career as a science educator?
The geology program that I'm a part of has more women
than men, gender is rarely an issue in decision
making or policy making--seniority is a much bigger
factor.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
When I was a junior in college, I had just come back
from my very first Association for Women Geoscientists
all charged up. My classmate and I approached the geology
club with the idea of trying to generate outreach for
young girls to get them excited about science and geology.
We were met with some pretty heavy resistance and strong
criticism (even so far as to say that we should educate
the boy scouts instead of the girl scouts b/c then
the boys could see what girls could do...). I was
appauled. However, some of the professors pulled us
aside to tell us that they strongly supported any action
we wanted to take. That was my first experience realizing
how much gender could be a "hot-button" item.

Most of the time I've not felt any specific problems,
however, I do feel that the science world is a very
masculine place (needing to dominate, prove yourself
superior)--very cutthroat and competitive not supportive
or nurturing (among my peers it has been supportive and
nurturing--but in the "older generation" it is definately
more masculine and the system seems to support it
continuing this way).
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think I have had some opportunities open for me
because of my gender and others are a greater struggle
because of my gender. I'm not sure this has changed
over time for me.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very important--in grammar school and high school, not
as much because there was so much else going on that
friends in general were important. However, as I came
to places where there were fewer and fewer women, the
female companionship became very important.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Don't feel you need to change who you are to be a
scientist. Find other women (or even just other
classmates) that you feel comfortable with to create a
network of support. There will be times when you feel
discouraged--don't worry everyone does, some people
(mostly males) hide it better than others. Find an
aspect of the science you really like and work toward that
goal.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were no professors in my specific major (geology),
but I did have female professors in other science classes.
(1 for chemistry and 1 for physics). I didn't view
them as role models since they were in large classes
where there wasn't a lot of personal interaction. I
did meet a visiting professor of geology while in college
who was something of a role model for me. She gave
advice on graduate school and aspects to avoid and what
to look for. My school did not offer a course on the
history of women in science and engineering--if it did,
I probably would have taken it (as it was, my history
class I took for graduation requirement was the history of
women in modern times). However, I learned very little
about the history of women in science while I was in
college (and still know very little).
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Family hasn't been a factor for me yet, but it definately
seems that compromises need to be made--either wait
until you have tenure (in which case you may be jeopardizing
the health of your baby) or potentially give up the idea
of tenure for a family. The other challenge is the
dual career issue that stresses me out--it isn't an
issue yet, but when my husband finishes his PhD, all
bets are off.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work with a small number of colleagues.
I find that ideas can be generated and bounced off each
other--and result in a much higher productivity overall.
However, it's important that it is within a supportive
environment and all channels of communication are open.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2000


Submitted April 6, 2003, 7:31 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes and no:
On the yes side:
- My mother saw that I was interested in math and science and encouraged me to learn as much as possible
- I had a great chemistry teacher in high school who encouraged me

On the no side:
- I had a guidance counselor in high school who said I could not take advanced chemistry in my last year because \"my mind was like a teacup and, even though I had done well in the past, the teacup was filling up and I did not have enough room there for more chemistry - only enough room in there for more biology\". Luckily, my mother changed my guidance counselor the next day.


Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
yes and no:
For undergraduate work, I was in a scientific degree program. I do not feel that I was encouraged or discouraged more than anyone else

For graduate work, I definitely feel I was discouraged. In one case, I did not get to work with a certain professor, even though a less qualified male did get to work with him. In another case, a professor told me that I should not date while in the graduate school because that would take away my will to do the work. He said it was O.K. for men because they did not have the same pressures as women, but he did not think it was O.K. for women. He was mostly worried about me slacking off or leaving due to a new family, etc.


Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I work in the pharmaceutical industry. I believe the encouragement is from the top down. When I first started after my BS, I worked in a group with a male scientist who provided wonderful encouragement. It had nothing to do with male/female, but with interest and skills. I enjoyed it. He encouraged me to do several things that people my level working for others were not allowed. After 4 years of terrific experiences, all quiet experiences that never got on to any review, I left that department when the other managers found that I had such freedoms and started to limit them. Specifically, I was asked to stop an experiment in the middle. I felt - and still feel - that the reason was that the manager wanted the credit to go to a man who worked for him - and not to me, a woman.

I joined another company that had several women in management. That really seemed to make a difference. I did very well with several advancements. I also completed my Ph.D. part time, with work providing instrumentation and monetary support. It turned out great. There was one snag - in the beginning years of working for this second company, I had several males as my managers. I lived at home. Due to family problems, I paid the mortgate, new car loans for my mother, for the new water heater and dishwasher, etc. I had full responsibility for supporting my mother and my younger brother while he finished school. However, my bosses thought that I was staying at home and saving all my salary, so I did not need to have a higher salary, even though my performance was always \"top box\" for my level.

Interestingly, the two companies merged. I had an opportunity to return to the first site and was very quickly reminded of the issues. My boss was often told that I was not forceful enough as a manager. However, even if he and I worked out a specific plan of action in guiding the group, the group members could protest to my manager who would then say that I was pushing too hard - and he would renegotiate with the group members. In the meantime, I lost 4 years of advancement. The scientific opportunities were very good at this place, so I decided to stay for a few years and learn the details of the new area, and then move on. A few months ago, the department reorganized and I got a new boss, who is making up for the lack of advancement. I may stay a while.

All in all, I am now with the same (merged) company for 21 years.


Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
The first case was the whole atmosphere at my first job. The department had realized that they had not hired enough women - 2/50. So, in 1982, they decided they had better start hiring more women - and so they did, but all at the lower levels. People in other groups called us \"the pharmacy girls\". After a couple of years, the department realized that they did not balance the hiring of men and women at this entry level, so all new people hired were men. When the men joined, all the women got an unexpected - and unexplained - increase in pay.

The second case was when I had finished my MS work and was going on to the Ph.D. A professor said that my project idea was not a good one and told me he did not want me working for him. Remember - around that time, I was moving from one company to the second. The person he took instead, was from my first company. He was also the guy that the manager had wanted the credit to go to. He then took my very same project idea and worked with the professor. This guy got several publications and a patent from my idea. He is now 2 levels higher than I am, and still not the brightest.

One big eye opener was when I became the manager of several scientists - many with similar experience and talents - and all with significantly higher salary - and all men.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I do not think that my opportunities have changed over time. I think that the opportunities of women entering the pharmaceutical field has changed in the last 21 years. Their expectations are higher. They do not see the problems I saw, and with any luck, they will not.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
In school, I found that networks with women, specifically, were not overly helpful. However, networks with scientific groups (eg. science clubs in high school, scientific associations at work)were very important.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
You need to want to do science. You will probably not earn what a marketing or other business person may earn. However, if you enjoy it, you will stick with it because it is fun and because you continue to learn. If you find that you are not learning or have learned all you can in your current job, then look for other opportunities to learn.

This is the same advice I would give anyone.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No to all.

I had some women professors - some I liked very much and others I did not. I did not distinguish women from men as role models.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Well, I am 44 and I just got married 2 years ago. I never had children.

I know that I married a man who did have a lot to do with raising his children - and it definitely limited the amount of time that he could spend at work. However, it did not hurt his salary and advancement. I know - I was his manager for a while several years ago.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
The effectiveness of the team is EXTREMELY important to me. It bugs me when everyone does not pull their weight.

I work better in teams. I do not like to limit the people I work with.
What is your highest level of education attained?




Submitted August 9, 2002, 4:45 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, I received much encouragement from both my parents. Even though I didn't do as well in math and science as I did in the humanties, I realized when I was a teenager that I wanted to be a scientist. My father (who is a scientist) only wanted to make sure that 1) it was what I really wanted and 2) I understood that I would not be rich. Once he was convinced that I knew what I was getting into, he always made a point to introduce me to his female colleagues.

Both my parents were supportive of my scholastic achievements and supported me (in many ways including financially) to pursue college and graduate education.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
As an undergrad, I received support from some my college professors (all of whom were male in my department at the time I was a student). They helped me by not only personally encouraging my participation in extracurricular activities such as field trips, seminars, and scientific conferences, but they also helped me to get jobs as a student research assistant.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After completing my undergrad degree, I was unable to find a job in my field and ended up working in a completely different field for a year before I started a master's program.

Graduate school didn't start out as the daunting, frustrating battle that it turned out to be. I fought with my own doubts, with my advisor, and basically have considered quitting the field more than once. I think that I owe my entire master's degree to a female professor (not my advisor) who was always encouraging and supportive, even at a late stage in my research, because without her, I wouldn't be finishing now...and I wouldn't be considering a PhD sometime in the future.

I currently work in a profession that was not in my career plans, but I am learning skills and gaining experience that will benefit any future work in my field. My current work environment is not very conducive to career development, even within the scope of my job, but I do have a female supervisor who is very supportive of my willingness and desire to expand my knowledge and skills, though this is only within the scope of my position within the company.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
My undergraduate career was spent at a mining school (though that wasn't my major) and I noticed almost from the first day a rather chilly reception from some of my classmates (and a few professors). Throughout my undergrad years, there were always little incidents, particularly in the field, but also in class, that served to remind me that I was not exactly welcome. There's also still a superstition that it's bad luck to have women underground in a mine.

It wasn't until I started working in consulting that I realized that it's worse in the industry. Particularly, women get passed up for field jobs and for more "technical" work even though their educational background is the same or more appropriate for the task or even if the women have experience in that area.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
My opportunities seem to have gotten worse, since I graduated from college, as sectors of the economy (besides academia which is known for having few prospects) respond negatively to less favorable economic conditions.

However, because external pressures appear to be limiting my opportunities, I have started to change my perception of the work I can and will do with my science background. I have come to realize that many opportunities exist for a scientist to work outside the traditional scientific occupations as well as in other parts of the world.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I have cultivated on my own (partly without realizing it) informal networks of fellow women scientists since I was an undergraduate. Even though most of my close friends were not in science or engineering fields, I always had someone I turn to for support or advice who was in science.

When I was in graduate school, I became a member of one of the professional organizations for women in science and that has served me well for many things including support and encouragement from fellow women scientists. Currently, the women in this organization provide my only contact with researchers in my field, as I am in employed the consulting industry where little if any research is done.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
These are a few things I learned:
Believe in yourself, because there may be a time when no one else will. Build your own network of women scientists early on in your career. There will always be young women aspiring to be scientists and I always try to remember what it was like for me at that stage and how other women scientists helped me and how I in turn can help support the next generation.

When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
While there were no female faculty members in my department when I was an undergraduate, I met a few women working in my field whom I could consider role models who held research positions within the department and at allied government agencies.

At graduate school, there were female professors in my department, but, due to personality conflicts, I can only consider a few of them role models. I have found more role models since I joined a professional organization focussing on women and girls in my field.

During my entire educational career, I did not take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering, but I did my own research on the subject, since I felt I should know something about the history of women in science and engineering.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, most of the women scientists (and some men) that I know who have children have different schedules, and tend to do much, much less field work (if any) than those who don't have children. Also in my field, higher the position that you have, the more likely you will do little or no field work.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Actually, I've done most of my work (for grad research and currently) alone, which I don't mind, but I do enjoy working on a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
1999


Submitted April 30, 2003, 12:36 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes.
Both of my parents are/were scientists (my father is deceased), so entering science seemed not only natural, but almost expected.
I was always encouraged to excell at academics and pursue whatever interests I entertained.
My brother and I were instilled with a love for reading at a very early age - my father read to us every night, and took us to the library every other week.

Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes indeed.
I had an exceptionally encouraging senior thesis advisor, as was my academic advisor and other professors in the department.
I was encouraged to perform research for my senior thesis, apply for college awards, and to pursue graduate study in biology.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I took a year off after college, prior to attending graduate school.
I spent 6 yrs. in grad school full-time to earn my Ph.D.
I realized that I did not want to be a bench scientist, and set out to join the field of science policy.
I spent 3 years at a science-based non-profit organization, then transitioned to a AAAS/NSF Science & Engineering Fellowship, where I am now.
My graduate advisor was a bit shocked when I first told him I had no plans for a bench-science career, but he has been completely supportive of my endeavors since then.
My mentor at the non-profit is exceptionally encouraging in whatever I do, and my mentor and colleagues at the NSF are fully expectant that I will remain in science policy as a career.


Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
The only thing that comes to mind is when at a meeting, there is conversation that occurs in the ladies' room.
Obviously, women are not part of the conversations in the men's room, just as the men are not part of the conversation in the ladies' room.
I can honestly say I don't believe my career has been hampered by my gender, in fact it may be helped by it, as some employers are still attempting to increase the number of women staff in their offices.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
As I become more experienced, I believe my gender is an asset to career advancement.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
These networks always were and still are very important.
They allow women the opportunity to meet new role models and get expert advice on important career and family issues.
I have used these networks throughout my educational and professional experiences.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If it is what you want to do, there is nothing that should stand in your way!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
We had an active college Women in Science chapter of which I was a part.
The female faculty in the science departments were, with one exception, eager to participate in and assist with our activities.
Those that had children were especially inspirational - showing us that career and family could co-exist successfully.
There were no formal classes on the history of women in science and engineering, though there was an excellent anthropology course on gender which touched lightly on some pertinent issues.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, indeed. My daughter gives my life a completely new meaning, one that superceeds anything in my career.
It changes one's perspective of the work one does, as well as how many hours are really required of one on the job.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked with people both in the long and short term.
Typically I prefer to work as a team.
It is ultimately much more interesting and provides more learning opportunities.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1999


Submitted October 3, 2002, 1:38 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, my parents always encouraged me to do whatever I wanted. They helped foster my fascination with dinosaurs in elementary school (we watched a lot of PBS shows). They often took me camping, to museums, on nature walks and things like that. I was also generally encouraged by my teachers in school and was one of the few female students that did very well in math.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, my college professors were very supportive. Having attended a small liberal arts college for my undergraduate degree, the science community was very small, but always encouraging.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have been a professional scientist for nearly 11 years since completing my Master's Degree and I have been very lucky to have always had a very good work environment. I was always beeb encouraged to pursue my career and felt valued as an important contributor to my company's success.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I have not experienced any particular event that I felt hampered my career differently than my male colleagues. I have CHOSEN to decrease my work hours to spend more time with my young children, which is currently limiting my opportunities, however, this was a CHOICE I made and I am not interested in those other opportunities at this time. I am fully confident that if I wanted to re-focus on my career again, these opportunities would open up again.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think the opportunities for women in science have improved over time. Starting out over 10 years ago, I certainly never thought I'd be able to work part-time while I raised my children, and still be doing the same kind of work that I did before. I think employers are becoming more flexible in allowing women to balance their family with their careers.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I didn't really know any women scientists until I was in graduate school, but they were very helpful to me at that time. I don't think it's critical to have a network of women scientists as long as you have a network of supportive friends and family (male or female)! It never really occurred to me growing up that it would be any different or more difficult for me to be a scientist because I was a girl.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Do what you love and try to surround yourself with people who support and love you no matter what you do.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
For my graduate degree, I was very fortunate to have attended a school that, at the time, had 4 female professors in my department. My thesis advisor was a woman and I would consider her my strongest role model. I did not take any classes on the history of women in science or learn much about their accomplishments.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, I have chosen to work fewer hours, in a position that requires only limited travel away from home so that I can spend more time with my family.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I generally prefer to work as part of a team, and have been doing so for all of my career. I have worked on a number of different teams, with many different people and disciplines.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1991


Submitted February 16, 2003, 10:25 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, mostly by teachers in elementary school and high school. (I knew at 10 that I wanted to be an astronomer)
My parents weren't that impressed -
they thought it would pass, like my desires to be a ballerina,
a nun, etc...
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, but by college, I was already into Astronomy.
The problem was dealing with my freshman
physics classes, which required a semester of Calculus
I hadn't finished yet. My Calculus didn't catch up to
the Physics until the end of Sophomore year.
My astro. advisor (male) pointed out that just about
everybody had to take that class whether
or not they'd had the Calculus and to tough it out and
keep going unless I got an F. That was the only thing
that kept me from dropping out of the major. I could
handle the Astronomy and Calculus, I just hated the
Physics. My advisor was the one who kept me going.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I had a hard time with grad school - I was told grad school
was the only way to continue in Astronomy (which wasn't
true then and isn't true now) and was encouraged to get
into a program - preferably a PhD one - at any cost.

I got into the wrong one for me. I didn't know what to look
for - no one had given me guidelines for that - and unlike
undergrad, it isn't so easy to transfer.

I left grad school, feeling an absolute failure, found that
there were an abundance of jobs - especially with the
Federal Government (Patents, Dept. of Energy, etc.). I
landed one with the Hubble Space Telescope - something
I considered amazing luck because it was planned to
be the premier astronomical research facility.

I worked on helping observers put together observing programs, which involved astronomy, spacecraft
engineering and software testing and operation. The only
thing I knew going into it was the astronomy and how to
handle a computer.

Since then, I've worked on a calibration team for a science
instrument (more astronomy and lots more software coding)
and then moved onto testing the software that drives the
data archive - all for the same project, the Hubble Space
Telescope.

The environment where I work is VERY supportive of
astronomy - and there are many women working there.
There aren't many women at the uppermost levels, but
we're working on that. :) Our new CIO (Chief Information
Officer) is a woman.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I haven't felt hampered, myself, but I have felt frustrated
that certain women were promoted and others weren't.
The ones that got promoted weren't the ones I looked
up to and respected.

I decided to be my own role model and take what good things I observed from my male bosses and synthesize them
for myself.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
There is more visibility to various issues over the last 10
years - I think the changes enacted have been for the
betetr, not just for women but for men too.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
There weren't any back then.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Do NOT give up.
Find someone who will listen to you and support you
emotionally (e.g. "EVERYBODY hates classical mechanics")
and keep going.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, unfortunately. There wasn't anybody female & senior
at the departments, until I was a senior and there was one
female grad student. There were no history of women in
science classes that I knew of.

I'll tell you, though, one of my male professors told us the
story of Hypatia and that made a big impression on myself
and the other female undergrads. There were quite a number
of us ladies; the Astronomy Dept was more balanced than
the Physics Dept for undergrads. We talked about the
Hypatia lecture afterwards - it seemed to hit all of us.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No, my work environment seems pretty accepting of
family life.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
No, I've worked with a large variety of staff.
I enjoy working with a team - it seems that that's
the paradigm for accomplishing enterprise class
projects in the real world.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
2000


Submitted January 17, 2003, 11:59 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No, I was encouraged to choose something practical and tradtional, hence I got my BS is Science Ed and taught high school for 8 yrs before returning for my Ph.D. in biology. However, my parents did value education, and we often had open-minded discussions of scientific topics during my childhood that contributed to development of my curiosity and aspirations.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
A mixture. Some were encouraging and some were not. When I was considering graduate school, the Graduate coordinator at the time was very discouraging, saying things like "Well, you can say goodbye to your family if your in graduate school" . (I was married and had a child). That was enough to scare me away for another year. Luckily, when I returned, I met very encouraging people who were thrilled to have me around.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I enjoyed teaching high school but my dream was to be a scientist. I had a wonderful experience in graduate school. My major prof and fellow graduate students were very supportive. However, my first postdoc experience was horrible. It was at a biomedical center filled with arrogent and condescending male M.D.'s. My advisor was belittling and and stifling. Luckily, I found another postdoc position and left there after 1 yr. My 2nd postdoc experience was great, resulting in my first NSF grant as sole PI. I enjoyed the research very much and survived on "soft money" for 4 yrs. I interviewed for tenure-track positions and got 3 offers. In the end, I declined the offers due to unanticipated child custody problems posed by relocating (I was divorced and had joint custody of my child). Since living on soft money is too precarious, I decided to accept an instructor position.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes, during my first postdoc experience I felt that males, even graduate students, were treated with rerspect and made to feel important. All the females I knew there felt out of place, unwanted, and demeaned.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
It has greatly fluctuated, mostly due to the mentality of people with power making decisions that affected my career.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I never had a network of women scientists until now (AWIS!)
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Don't be afraid to follow your dreams. Try to make the best out of situations. If you feel like you are treated badly, find a better place.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Only a few, and none had children which scared me. There were no such classes offered, but I did learn a little from a few classes (e.g. Barbara Mclintock)
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No, just the approach is different. For example, I may not work the same schedule as people without families but I work as many hours. Also, I focus on working at work and not socializing so that I can get home to my family.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes, I have one colleague that I've had a longlasting collaboration with. Other than that, I definitely prefer to work individually
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1993


Submitted August 12, 2002, 8:14 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was strongly encouraged to go into engineering by my father who was also an engineer. My younger brother went into engineering also. On long car rides my father loved to make us do math word problems!
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I was a top student so I was encouraged by most of my professors. I had a male mentor my senior year.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I started out in the biotech industry, but quickly moved onto to the environmental field. I have worked for large and small businesses and as a consultant. I have worked part-time for the past 13 years which has allowed me to balance family/work life.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not much change
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
A female colleague was instrumental in getting me into the environmental area after the biotech industry didn't work out for me.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Engineering is a GREAT career for women. You can get an interesting, well paid job with only a Bachelor of Science level of degree. There are many different types of engineering jobs; anything from working outside on a construction site to working with computers or being involved in manufacturing an important consumer product.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were no female engineering professors at UCSD when I was there. A woman joined the ChemE faculty soon after I graduated.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Of course
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like to be part of the management team while having primary responsibility for environmental and safety matters.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1983


Submitted November 17, 2002, 12:20 PM

What is your highest level of education attained?




Submitted March 10, 2003, 2:54 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, but in a light manner. The expectation was low. No one guided me or gave the right guidence at right time.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No, Girls are treated as if they have come just to pass their time.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Aftercompleting my B.Sc I joined post graduation in university. Upto M.Sc it was okay. But during Ph.D
It was very difficult to work with boys. Some boys think that girls are good for nothing.
We cannot work till late night as sometimes the circumstances are not favorable. I had to work hard to prove my skill. Other male researcher were not co-operative but my supervisor was nice he use to co-op with me.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes, Just after Ph.D I got a post doc. fellowship offer from CNRS France, but
I got married and then after one year i was having child so I could not accept that fellowship.I missed that chance and from then I am still searching for a Post doc. fellowship or a job.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, my oppertunities as a woman scientist have changed over time but I cannot tell you at this stage wheather the change was for betteror worse!!
I am still waiting for my luck to take a twist. Lets see how it goes!!
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
At the varius stages of education unfortunately I didnot come across any networks of women but I was always inspired by women at higher positions thinking that I must also work hard and go high..
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Be honest at and with your proffession, work hard and find out your own way to go high. There are difficulties I know but if we cross the hurdles and get success then only we are the true women of this age.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, Not at all.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, ofcourse it affects. For us the type of work we do family life disturbs a lot but it is necessary too.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I preffer to work with my mind with some guidence from some guidence from a experienced
expert.Because in research field discussion always plays an important role.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1998


Submitted December 5, 2003, 12:54 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
yes.
My mother encouraged me to go into Engineering. After I begun to take courses in college in the sciences, my professors and fellow classmates were encouraging as well. Of course in some courses the professors definitely were more encouraging to the male students. They had higher expectations of them. This was especially noticed in field courses I took.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I received great letters of recommendations in order to pursue my graduate degree. My instructors from my undergrad college often told me they were very proud of me and encouraged me to go on and even hinted they could see me go on as far as getting my doctorate.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I had a very poor work experience out of school. I dont quite know if it had anything to do with my sex or not. The company had women in the sciences group meetings. I guess that I felt that my managers noticed more that I was missing from work (due to my attendance at the meetings) and therefore my male colleagues were getting more positive attention than the females. I also felt some discomfort at times in the male management when working with female colleagues. In some cases the female managers were backstabbing the females in the company to get ahead.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
The male colleagues are closer to the managers. They drink together, socialize together, and tend to have bonds that are unattainable as a female.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
N/A
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I never really had networks of women scientists until my first work experience. I was disappointed in it at first, but later had learned things from it. Sometimes the things I learned from it weren't necessarily what was trying to be taught.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it! Be strong and don't let anyone stand in your way, but remember not to step on other women following behind you.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I met a few incredible woman scientists and did consider them role models. I was upset that there weren't more. Also, I was upset that the most respected (by males and femails)girls always seemed to be the more masculine of girls.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
N/A
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I've worked both with colleagues, and independently. I liked working in teams more, realizing that this is the way to get noticed among the colleagues and managers.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma



Submitted August 22, 2002, 5:31 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Not exactly. My family was very education-oriented, so higher education was a basic expectation. Both maternal grandparents had PhD's in science, my mother had a masters degree and taught elementary school, and my father was a chemical engineer. Music was also very important, so I have combined science and music in my career. I work as a fisheries research biologist and play in a symphony orchestra.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, my chemistry and biology professors supported study of their subjects, just as the other liberal arts professors supported their subjects. I wouldn't say that my major professor (undergraduate) went out of his way to encourage me, and there was only one woman professor in the biology department. All chemistry professors were men; all quite good, and excellent teachers, but that just wasn't my leaning. In graduate school there were actually more female students than male students in fisheries at that time. However, the women had trouble finding jobs, and most changed fields later.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
One way or another I suppose my work environment encouraged me to pursue my career. After receiving my BA in biology, I was apparently trained for nothing, and couldn't find a job. I finally found a job in film chemistry research, but was confined to a technician job. They wouldn't recognize my chemistry training because my degree was in biology. Frustration (and a very encouraging female boss) led me to graduate school, and I earned an MS degree in Zoology/Fisheries. I couldn't find a job in fisheries, though. I finally found a job doing water chemistry, halfway across the country. I was later given a job in fisheries in the same outfit, because that group was desperate for help. That job was also dead-end, but by that time I had some fisheries experience. I finally found another fisheries job, again many states away, where I now work. I have little possibility for advancement now, but I'm not about to move again and start all over. Ironically enough though, I'd say I'm fairly marketable, finally.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
After college, it was obvious that men had better opportunities than women. My first employer definitely gave married men better jobs with more advancement than it gave to young unmarried women. After all, "the men were stable and had families to support." When I was in graduate school, the head of fisheries in the state had said that women would get jobs in fisheries over his dead body...(he's now dead, and women are getting jobs, but it's a little late for me.) Most state fisheries offices were entirely male, and very "good old boy". I applied for a fisheries job in another state, but apparently asked too many questions about career opportunities, etc. I didn't get the job, but was told later (confidentially) that they found exactly what they wanted...a token female who filled out a sweater well, and had little ambition. I finally found a job in environmental research, halfway across the country. My boss there told me I should do the water chemistry, because women were naturally better in the laboratory, and men were better in the field doing the fisheries work. I was finally given a job with the fisheries group, only because they were so desperate for help. In the state where I work now, opportunities are now excellent for women. However, change is slow and difficult, and being a woman (especially one in charge) at many (especially rural) offices can be a lonely struggle. I am not in charge, and I feel fairly well accepted.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Things are getting better, but change is hard in this traditionally male-dominated field. Attitudes may change, mostly, as the older employees retire and new ones come in.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I have encountered few or no networks of women scientists. I've had a few friends along the way, and some I speak with occasionally, but it has been a lonely path.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Keep your goals in mind, but be prepared to adapt. You can plan all you want, but life has a funny sense of humor, and you may not always get the joke. If you want a family, go for it, unless you think your career will fill all your emotional needs. If you want a career, go for it, and speak up for yourself...YOU are the only one who will always be there for YOU. Don't be too shy, make lots of friends, make lots of connections, because they can help in the long run.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, no, no. I don't recall ever hearing about any courses on women's history, and women professors were fairly rare in the sciences. I would consider my grandmother to be sort of a role model, since she earned her doctorate in bacteriology in about 1920 or so. However, she had to give it up when she had children.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Absolutely. Through no plan or desire of my own, I did not marry until my late 30's, and then I was unable to have a child. I had always wanted a family, and planned to make room for it in my career. We finally adopted one child (and I cannot over-emphasize how WONDERFUL she is), but my employer would not let me come back to work part-time. They had not been forced to confront these issues very much yet, with mostly male employees. They have made some very helpful accommodations, however, and they will face these issues more and more, I know.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Mostly, I work alone, but it would be nice to work with others.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma



Submitted May 1, 2003, 4:22 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No. Both of my parents did not finish college and my Grandmother was self educated. She did however work as a nurse and owned and operated a private hospital in the rural area until the state finally built a public hospital. I was more into technology and art as a child so really how much support could I get. My grandmother did buy me every electronic gadget and my first PC back in the day of Vic 20's :)
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, after taking apart everything as a child I chose the hard to see world of virology and studied microbiology. I had the most AMAZING instructor that supported me beyond anything I could explain. She was and is amazing.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Sadly I got my BS in Microbiology and felt a calling to technology (see I went in a big circle) so I ended up a forensic art director. I directed for years before starting my own firm medical, scientific and other graphics, illustrations, animations, presentations and so on.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I just don't feel I have been hampered.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, I think there are more opportunities now. Since I now own my firm as a woman business owner I have more opportunity than male owned firms.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I did not know of any.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Bunker down and follow your heart.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I did encounter those that I saw as and followed as a role model. I did ot take any history classes.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No, I did not feel this either.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Both actually and I tend to prefer the team approach but sometimes it is good to be alone and brain storm.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
96


Submitted January 20, 2004, 2:27 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, as a child I had the fortunate opportunity of living in Calgary, Canada. This amazing opportunity opened my eyes and struck my curiousity to explore where such beauty had originated. My family encouraged this curiousity by taking many trips to the mountains, glaciers, and any other natural wonder. The experiences made a permanent impression and I graduated with a degree in Geology.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, many professors encouraged anyone (male/female) to strive for higher education or to find a job. Students had access to setting up as many appointments with their advisors to accomplish his/her dream
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
As a woman and a fairly recent graduate with a bachelor's degree, I have found it very hard to find a position. This seems to be due to the economy and the requirements of higher education.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I have not had enough experience in my field to know that I have been treated any different from my male counter-part.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think that there have been more opportunities for women as a whole in the workforce. Therefore, I think that over time it has been better for women to use their skills and experiences.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
It would be very important at this time for networking in my field. I am looking for a position to use my skills and experiences and I would love to be able to discuss my options.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
The advice I would give young women pursuing a career in the sciences is gain as much experience as possible when in college. It is hard for recent graduate to have experience. Internships or Co-0ps are great opportunities. It also helps to network your capabilities.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes, I graduated with many women in my class. There are also many women scientists that were my professors as well. There were not classes offered on the subject of women in science engineering specifically. Women scientists were mentioned in classes when it was approprioate to the study.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No, I do not have a family of my own at this time.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
No, I have not experienced working with a partners of my field. If I were in a situation where I had worked in a company for a long period of time, I would prefer to work as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
2002


Submitted August 28, 2002, 10:25 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was absolutely and positively encouraged. I grew up in a house with extremely supportive parents. They raised me to believe that I could do anything I put my mind to. I was born in 1964, to give you an idea of what era I grew up in. My father had his own business and even though my mother had a college degree, she was a stay at home mom until she started helping my dad with his business. Even though both my parents were incredibly encouraging, they didn't know anything about engineering. That didn't stop them though. They set me up with engineers they knew so that I could talk to them or shadow them. I did both. At school, I was also encouraged by my counselors & teachers, although this was more subtle. I was at the top of my class in high school and I think the subtle encouragement I received from my teachers was probably all they thought I needed and they were probably right.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
While I was at the top of my class in high school, I was just in the middle of the class in college. I remember receiveing no encouragement what so ever from my college professors, although I did not know them as well as my high school teachers. My chemical engineering class had about 60 people in it, so it wasn't so huge that they didn't know who I was. I also had a counselor to help me find a co-op job. Co-oping was a requirement at my school so everyone had a counselor. This counselor helped me find a job, but I never felt that he offered any encouragement. It was all very mechancial to him. I was just one of his students and as long as I had a co-op job, he could check me off his list.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
The first company I went to after I graduated was not a good fit for me. I don't think the company knew what to do with me, both as a new engineer and as a women. I was in process design work for a chemical company and I had almost no shop experience. I definitely had some discrimination/harrassment issues while I was there, but because I had no support group, I had absolutely no idea how to handle them. I had one male engineer there that was just a couple years older than me and he was very encouraging. Other than him, I was lost. I didn't like the company or the environment and only last 1.5 years there.
The second company I went to work for is the company I'm still with. I've been here almost 14 years now and I can't speak highly enough of it. From where I sit, being a women has not been an issue. I've had wonderful, meaningful projects that have been challenging and stretched by abilities as an engineer. I've worked on developing polymers for products we make and then worked on bringing those products to production. I've worked on designing, building, and starting-up a paint line and waste treatment plan in China. I've worked as a shop foreman (great experience) and right now I'm a 6 Sigma Black Belt.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I don't think my career has been hampered by being a women. I work in a company with a lot of engineers. Some of the men have done very well and some of the women have done very well. Every single person, be they male or female, is different and has different abilities. It hard to compare people side by side since no two people are ever equal. Also, some opportunities, just happen by being in the right place at the right time. I see this happen with my femal peers as well as my male peers.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I've been with a very stable, supportive company for the last 14 years. I've seen people become more aware of discrimination/harrassment issues which means people are better at saying the right thing. I've also seen more women engineers enter the ranks which means there are more women gaining experience and more women available for promotion. I don't think the opportunities have changed. Awareness of women and the number of women has changed, for the better.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
High School - I didn't even know they existed.

College - I knew they existed but didn't think they were important.

Early Career - I knew they existed but I wasn't sure how to tap into the group. I went to one Society of Women Engineers meeting and didn't get a lot out of it. I talked with the one woman engineer we had and just couldn't relate to her.

The Rest of My Career - I know they exist and I'm actively involved in networking and helping other women network. I've gotten a lot of support and encouragement from my involvement with the Society of Women Engineers and I get frustrated when people talk negatively of the group.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Engineering is a wonderful career. Sure there are not a lot of women in the field, but don't let that intimidate you. As an engineer, you can go to almost any company and do almost anything. You make a decent living and have challenging work. You can find part-time work as an engineer. You can work as a contract engineer. I think it's a great career choice for men or women. We have t.v. shows that highlight the exciting lives of doctors or lawyers, but we don't have anything like this for engineers. It's too bad because I think a lot of young people just don't realize what's out there in the field of engineering and it's awfully tough to find out.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No to all three questions. It's only been in the last couple years that I've actually found women role models in engineering, and most of that has been through the Society of Women Engineers. I don't think we had a class available on the history of women in science/engineering, and even if we did, I probably would not have signed up for it. I wasn't that big on history and at the time I was in college, I didn't realize that being a women engineer was that big a deal.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I have a husband but no kids. From what I've seen, the demands of raising a family can affect the type of work you do. It all depends on how high you place your family on the priority list. Some jobs require long hours and travel. If your family needs you at 5 pm every day, it's difficult to take on a job that has you on the road all the time or a job that has you working all the time. I worked 2nd shift for one of my assignments. If I had kids in school, I would have been reluctant to take this assignment as I would never have seen my kids.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
No to the first quest. I do prefer to work as a team though. I thrive when I can bounce ideas off other people and get their feedback.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1987


Submitted August 22, 2002, 11:47 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, My parents always encouraged everything I had interest in or accelarated at. I also got a lot of encouragement at the schools I attended.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes and No. I never had any direct encouragement from professors nor did I have any direct discrimination from professors.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Yes, I have always been encouraged by my co-workers and my supers to continue to excell and proceed with my career.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No I do not feel that my opportunities are hindered because I am a female. I think that my being raised in family that has taught me self confidence and assertiveness that I am able to put myself at their equal and that respect is returned. Women need to realize that they are worthy of the same opportunities and go after those opportunities. So many times I see women sit in silence and miss those opportunities and then gripe about it. He who stays silent, goes hungary.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, I think opportunities are increasing. But again my assertiveness to go after those opportunities has also increased.

How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Previously I hadn't used them much. Now as I am starting to think about a family there are issues that may be of concern and I think addressing those issues it is very helpful. If nothing else you make great friends that have your best interest at heart when you need them.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Learn to be assertive, you'll never get it if you don't ask for it, and remember above all your happiness is the most important.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes I did have contact with Women professors in the industry who I would consider role models. No I have not taken classes on women in science and engineering nor their accomplishments.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I am still pretty young with only a husband at home and parents that are still healthy, so I have not reached that point yet.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
The structure of things where I work is a team orientated situation. We all have our individual responsiblities, and everyone depends on each other for some peices of the informantion to make a whole.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Don't know / can't remember
2002


Submitted August 20, 2002, 10:05 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was encouraged by my parents and other family members and friends to study engineering. I am fortunate that my father was a Professor and VPI (now Virginia Tech) and the Head of the Mechanical Engineering Department for 30 years. I was always around engineering students, and professors. He encouraged me to study engineering from early childhood.

My teachers in high school encouraged me to study math but they (all female) didn't know much about engineering.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I had some support from my professors both negative and positive. I graduated in 1962. During the four years that I attended Va. Tech I was the only female student in Mechanical Engineering. There were six female students majoring in engineering in my class. Three of us graduated on time.

My freshman year I had several professors who didn't think I was "tough enough" to be an engineer. They told rotten jokes in class and tried to get me to quit. I was definetly tough enough to not let them drive me out of class.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have worked for 40 years in the defense industry. I am now the Director of Design Engineering for Atlantic Research Corporation. I have had some tough years as the only woman in the business and have had some great years. The major problem I encountered was the senior management at some times in my career. The "good old boys" group existed for many years at my company. They accepted me most of the time.

Discrimination still exists but it is less obvious.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Many times during my career I knew that I did not have the same opportunities. I survived in spite of it because I had a strong network of managers who respected my work and "took care of me" the term now is "mentor".

When I started in 1962 as a young single woman in this small progressive company it was hard to get the older men to think that I was serious. One of the vice presidents told me that I could not work on his project because "I would fall in love during the project, get married and quit".
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
They have definetly improved.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
During high school and college there was no network of women scientists or engineers.

During my professional career,I have been active in the Society of Women Engineers. The SWE network has been very important to my success and they are also very dear friends.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
I believe that a young woman can now have a wonderful careeer in engineering or the sciences.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
The only woman engineer that I met before I graduated was the wife of one of my cousins. She graduated in 1945 but only worked as an engineer for a few years.

However, my dear father always mentioned the women engineers that he met when he went to ASME conferences and other national events. He made me think that it was not unusual for a woman to be an engineer.

My role model was a woman doctor. She was one of the only professional women in my small home town.

When I attended college there were no courses aout the history of women in science or anything else. VPI was a white male military school. There were only 150 women students and most of them majored in Home Economics. They were not part of the college life or culture. The women students had their own dormatory and dining room. They did not take part in most of the college events.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I do not have a family. In fact I didn't marry until I was 58 years old. This is typical of many women in my age bracket. Most married but they could not have a career and a family. There is almost no way I could have had a career at ARC if I had been married with a family. The young women now are able to do so but have a busy life. I have personally helped improve the working conditions and the career opportunities for the young women engineers at ARC.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked with almost everyone at this Iprefer to work as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1972


Submitted August 20, 2002, 5:31 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
In elementary school, I heard "girls aren't good at math" which really confused me because I was good at math and really liked it. My mom said that it was nonsense because she was good at math too. She always told me that I could be good at whatever I wanted to do.

My dad is a mechanical engineer and a person who answers "how was your day?" in great detail. So, I grew up hearing all about engineering things (and started to understand it after a while).

Other than that, I wasn't particularily encouraged or discouraged about science until junior year of high school. Then, a teacher asked me "What are you going to study in college? Computer what? You're doing something with computers, of course." That was the first that I gave thought to studying computer science.

This same teacher also gave me many opportunities to learn computer science material that wasn't offered in the high school's courses.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No. I only had one female professor in my science classes. She didn't make an effort to talk with her (two or three) female students. The guys had a nasty nickname for her which made me want to keep my distance from her.

One male professor would answer questions asked by females verry sloowly and those asked by males quickly.

My graduating year, there was only one other female with a math/computer science degree.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
All of my jobs fully encouraged me except one with a government contractor. Even though my work was above reproach, I encountered obstacle after obstacle while working there. After a while, I left.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
At the job mentioned above, I sent an email to a superior about a trouble and a proposed solution that I needed his assistance with. The response from him was essentially "there, there, now don't you worry" with a pat on the head. A male co-worker copied and pasted my email into a message from him and sent it to this superior. The superior's response then was "oh, no! We have this terrible problem! Everyone must take care of it right now!"

At the end of 1.5 years of long and hard work, the credit and praise for my team's work went to two men.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not really, but I have seen an effort in the information security field to get more women involved and trained.

How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
They were very important towards the end of college. When you sit in classes with only, maybe, one other female day after day, you start to wonder if you're not feminine or crazy to have chosen a science field. I joined SWE then and was so happy after the first meeting. Here was a whole room full of nice, perfectly normal females who were all pursuing science or engineering degrees as well. It gave me peace of mind.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If someone tells you that girls aren't good at math, don't listen.
Females can be good at what ever they want to do.
My science career has provided independence which I value highly.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No.
No, none was offered.
just Judith Resnick because of the shuttle disaster
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I don't have a family but can see how it affects both males and females. You need to leave on time and have a harder time traveling. Vacation days go to school events, kid sick days, etc.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
The longest period of time that I've worked with someone is three years.
I like a mix of working individually and as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1992


Submitted August 4, 2002, 1:52 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
At home, I was strongly encouraged. My mother has a
bachelor's degree in Chemistry and my father is a
physics professor. At school, however, it was a
different story. I grew up in a rural area of
Pennsylvania (Berks county). I was placed
in a gifted program and I remember a game
we played in about 5th grade called "predator prey".
It was a population biology game and I enjoyed it.
I also had a fifth grade teacher (male) who had
devised an astronomy game. Students could advance
up the "ranks" by passing certain (voluntary)
tests on astronomy. I think I was the
only girl to make it to the highest rank. Competition
was fierce and the advance of one of us drove the others
to study and try to advance too.
Early on, my teachers decided that
I did not like math, since I hated doing ten thousand
problems that were all addition, subtraction,
multiplication, and division. As a result,
the school told my parents I couldn't take algebra
in 8th grade because my math grades were poor in earlier
grades. My parents complained, I took algebra, and,
needless to say,I LOVED it and got great grades. My
8th grade algebra teacher was a woman; it was very
unusual to have a female math/science teacher - except
for lower math and biology - in my rural school
district. Miss Renninger encouraged me a great deal.
I don't remember being encouraged as a high school
student, except by my parents. I had two
science teachers who were any good (physics and
chemistry II; there was no AP in my high
school). My general feeling
throughout school was that most teachers don't like
demanding students. (At the levels they are paid, I
understand why!!!)
However, it really squelched my respect for them and my
enthusiasm for school in general.

I remember a specific example of how as a
smart girl, I assumed that boys shouldn't be
interested in me. In ninth grade, my best friend
had a crush on a new boy in our algebra II class.
He kept asking me how to solve the homework problems.
It never occurred to me that he liked me, and not my
pretty, fashionable friend.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Definitely. However, I went to a women's college (Bryn
Mawr College)so mine is a special case.
Not only did I have female faculty members as
role models, the department faculty went out of their
way to show us that we could do it. We had
research opportunities available to us, faculty made
sure we knew about graduate schools, and they were
very accessible.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Except for my experience in industry (without my
lab coat on, men thought I was a secretary), I
would say that I have had an overall positive
experience. I have chosen my mentors carefully -
picking those whom I could tell from my "gut" instinct
would be supportive of me.

One important aspect I have found out is that I am not
good at accepting criticism, constructive or
otherwise. Unfortunately, criticism is a necessary evil in this
business. The only way to grow intellectually is to
have others critique your work (papers, grants, talks, etc.)
and then adjust your approach or respond to their criticism.
You can sulk (which I usually do for a week or two), and
give up OR you can sulk, and try again.

I used to ride horses. If you don't stay determined,
horses are bigger and stronger than you (not smarter,
thank heavens) and they WILL win if you let them.



Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I think that I am beginning to feel that going to
meetings is more difficult as a woman because even
if you worked for someone in the "old boys' network",
your mentors' friends and colleagues are more likely
to dismiss you (and forget about you)if you are a
woman. In bioinorganic chemistry, I have
been relieved to find that a lot of the women already
in the field are very supportive of younger women.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think, in fact, my opportunities have changed for
the worse as I get higher up. Partly, that is
because I need to forge my own path, which is more
difficult than working for someone who is already
established.

How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Networking in grammar school? You're kidding, right?

I think networks are most important now that I am on
my own. As I mentioned before, the women in the bio-
inorganic community have been very supportive.
My mentors did a good job of, as my Ph.D.
advisor put it, "putting a name with a face". My
papers had been published, but he made sure I went
to meetings so people in the field got to know me and
not just my name. My undergraduate research mentor
(a woman) is STILL a mentor for me (14 years later)
now that I am teaching.

With networking, it is nothing ventured, nothing gained.
When you go to meetings, you don't want to make a fool
of yourself by asking irrelevant questions or being
poorly informed, but if you don't ask questions or
stand up and be noticed, others won't know who you are.

At my current job, my department chair encouraged
me to invite experts in my field - people who would
be reviewing my grant proposals and/or papers -
here as seminar speakers so that they will get to know
me and our department. Of course, not all of these
people are women.
I now participate in the WISE group on campus, which I have
found to be very helpful and immensely supportive.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Do research or internships as early as you can: find out if you like it.
Pick mentors carefully: don't pick a woman, just because she is one.
Try, try again: criticism hurts, but is worth it.
Don't be afraid of change: it will be harder, but you will be better for it.
Do it because you love it: any job stinks if you don't like it.
Trust your instincts: if it doesn't feel right, it isn't right.
Be assertive: but remember that you can't fight every battle.
Ask questions of everyone: you never know where good advice will come from.

A close friend of mine told me:
"It's not a sprint; it's a marathon."
She is definitely right about that...
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
1) yes
2) no
3) indirectly and on my own.


In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Well, yes and no. I have to say the prospect of
being a faculty member and having a family seemed
daunting. Most of the women I know who have done this
wait until AFTER they have tenure to start families.
Because I took time off between
undergrad and grad school, I am an assistant professor
at 35 and couldn't wait much longer (biology doesn't wait for tenure). Luckily for me,
my university has been working on the
issue of maternity leave, and my
department chair and fellow faculty members have been
really great. My current peeve is that the university's
childcare doesn't start until children are 2 years old.
I would like to point out that most two year olds do
not have breastmilk as their exclusive supply of
nutrition like most newborns do.

I have been disappointed to find that some of my female
colleagues have not been supportive of giving their
grad students and post-docs maternity leave. Personally,
I feel that at the low wages grad students and
post-docs earn, 6 - 8 weeks of paid
maternity leave is a very small amount of money. How
are we to encourage more women to earn advanced degrees
- which will in turn place them in higher positions
of authority - if we don't support them in getting there?

I do think our society has a bias against women who
want to pursue their careers and have families. Just
look at the recent finding that children who are
breastfed for 9 months+ are "smarter" than those
who are not. And, the finding that children who
are in daycare are developmentally behind children who are not
placed in daycare. What is a mother who works outside the
home supposed to do with that information? As the
mother of a 5 month old, information like this
rips me to shreds emotionally. I want the best
for my children, but I want to have a career too.
How can I breasfeed my infant at work, when I need
to be in the lab in order to get papers out and
research grants funded??
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like both. I do get satisfaction from helping people
solve their problems. Some of my best experiences
have been working in the laboratory with my husband
(also a Ph.D. scientist). He is very different from
me, but he has taught me a lot about approaching
problems and working with others. He is much better
at team work than I ever will be.

However, I always hated having lab partners in school. Invariably, they were
more poorly prepared for the day's experiments than I
was so they slowed me down. I also felt it was unfair
to have them "ride on my coattails", getting credit
for the experiment working when they didn't really
contribute.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1998


Submitted September 7, 2002, 1:16 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I grew up in rural South Dakota and was, even as a little girl, curious about biology and what makes living things "tick". In spite of the fact that I am certain that my mother would have prefered a daughter who wore pretty dresses and bows in her hair, neither she, nor my father, ever complained about the numerous dissections I performed, the isopropanol perserved frog parts, the bugs I put in the freezer, or the plants and leaves I dried in our encyclopedias.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes!

Due to the fact that our family did not have a television, it was not until I attended college that I learned what a scientist did. Three professors in particular, at the technical institute from which I received my AAS degree, encouraged me to apply for technician positions at a nearby medical school. This changed my life. While working as a research technician and finishing my baccalaureate degree a few classes at a time, I had the great fortune of extremely positive mentoring by several of my employers (professors at the medical school). I eventually finished my B.S. and Ph.D. degrees and am extremely grateful for the encouragement I received. In addition, they shared aspects necessary for success in science that I feel not all students are exposed to within the confines of their education. Without the support of these wonderful mentors, I have to wonder whether the challenges that a career in science poses would have been too overwhelming.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
As I stated in question 2, I do consider the scientists with whom I worked during my Ph.D and postdoc training to have been extremely encouraging and excellent mentors. My current Center director where I hold my Assistant Professorship also fits this description. I consider myself to be extremely lucky.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No

In particular, I feel that my mentors did a very good job of treating all of us as equals. This is not to say that I did not see others outside of the labs in which I worked being treated in disparate manners based on sex.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Probably better.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Networks were very important...but not women specific networks. Feminist men were very important in my career too.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Come to understand that men and women are different. We communicate differently, we often are motivated by different things, we can work differently...we perceive differently. Women don't have to play a "man's game" to be successful in science, but having an understanding of our differences can make some of the unique challenges we face easier to "hurdle".
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes, I had a few women scientists that were excellent role models. However, I did not learn, in a formal sense, a whole lot about the specific contributions of women in science nor the extra challenges that they faced.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No, however, I consider this to be somewhat unusual.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I enjoy the scientific process either as a team or by working by myself.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1997


Submitted October 29, 2002, 4:56 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, My parents told me I could enter any profession I desired. I was only limited by my imagination not by the fact that I was female. I was empowered by what they told me and believed in myself and my female intellect.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, several of my college professors were female and this encouraged me to work in science. They were leading by example.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I was sexually harassed by a PhD who was my supervisor at Monsanto Co. Even thought the case was investigated and he was fired for his conduct I consequently left science because of it. In a predominently male industry I felt I was not judged on my ability as a scientist and would always be seen as different.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Know what your lifestyle will be like if you decide to pursue a career in this field. If it suits you- then good luck on your endeavor. If it doesn't- it would be best to find an alternative career.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I feel it is very difficult to have a career and a family because of the lack of time allotted to each. To be sucessful in industry requires much overtime to "prove" your committed to the project/company. This is the same time that is taken away from your family.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1998


Submitted August 16, 2002, 3:30 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. As a child, my Dad exposed me to science. And I always liked math and did well in class.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Some were more helpful and supportive than others. This was apparent during office hours when trying to get help with homework.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Lockheed - 7 yrs
Tangent Instruments - 2.5 yrs
Cheng Power Systems - 1.5 yrs
Moderately encouraging
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
?
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
don't know
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
no exposure during grammar school or high school
peer & professional network essential during college
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Don't give up. Keep at it. See the big picture.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I found female engineering peers to be extremely helpful and my involvement in SWE was indispensible. No. No.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
what?
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
some of both
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1989


Submitted August 21, 2002, 4:45 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Sort of. In 3rd grade I was very inquisitive and it started out with me asking questions of my teachers to see if I could stump them.
one teacher knew that I was very interested in ballet and gymnastics and she told me that I shoudl study physics because it would help me become a better dancer and gymnast. I believed her and took physics and math when I got to high school. I found that not only did it help me understand why I had to lean backwards when vaulting, and why rising up higher on my toes helped me to do triple pirouettes. I was the only Asian in the entire high school at that time. I didn't sense any discouragement from studying math or science.
My chemistry and physics teachers encouraged me to study whatever I wanted to.

None of my friends or relatives either encouraged me or discouraged me. They just let me figure out what I wanted to do on my own.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No. But they didn't discourage me either. Although there were many Asian graduate students, I was the only Asian undergraduate in Physics and one of 4 women in the entire department. Physics became steadily harder and harder. Eventually I transferred into nuclear engineering for two reasons: (1) it was lots easier than theoretical physics, and (2) I would be able to get a job without getting my PhD. When I transferred into nuclear engineering, I was the only undergraduate period, so I was the only Asian and the only female. The male graduate students pretty much treated me like a little sister and were very helpful.
All my professors at the University of Illinois were willing to help[ me understand the materials. I often sought help during their office hours. Once I got into the nuclear engineering department and was taking classes with graduate students, I found that the guys have problems understanding things also. I also learned which professors to take classes from.

Some college professors are brilliant and bring in lots of money, but they cannot teach. That is a dilemma for all academic institutions.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
For the most part, my employers were gender blind. It wasn't until I started working for the government that I found how prejudiced and hypocritical people can be. For the majority of my career I did technical analyses or activity observations and inspections. Later in my career, I got promotions to the senior level. But when I got there, the promotion get sparser and sparser. When we started implementing the Government Performance and Reform ACt (GPRA), these attitudes became more obvious to me. The thing that I have learned is that Asians are rewarded for their techncail competence, but not told what skills they need to develop to go beyond a senior techncial analyst.
They are then promoted, up to a point. Then, should they decide to go for management type positions, they are lacking the skill set needed to succeed as a manager. So teh glass ceiling for Asians is real and manufactured. I don't think this is malicious, I just think that the organization tends to use the talents they see in very traditional roles. Hence smart Asians can do calculations and background work, but should not be promoted into positions of visibility or power.

This generally works for foreign born Asians. For the next few generations, it will be intersting, particularly with the recent debaucle of Wen Ho Lee and the issues at LLNL with discrimination against Asians. I made it into management but they found a reason to move me laterally into an non-supervisory position.


Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes. When my mother got cancer, I, as the only child had issues in being the caregiver. Married men usually rely on their wives to do those things. As a single female, I didn't have that option. More time caring for my parents translates into either less time at work or developing health issues. I have seen that senior management is much more tolerant of the decline of male superivisor performance than that of females.
Also, I have generally found that female supervisors have higher expectations of their women employees. Sometimes this is good and sometimes it is bad. I suspect that it would have been easeir for me if I had been married.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes. When I was in my 20's and 30's, I had many options. There were so many things to try. Now that I am approaching 50, management had decided what types of assignments I can do. The exciting new projects go to younger people. They have more energy but less experience. We have had to fix a number of issues, but this seems to be the way that senior management wants to run our organization.
It seems to me that it would be better to have more senior people work with a junior person on some projects. That would provide a back-up when one of them is ill or out for an extended time. on the other hand, there is a desire to bring in younger people because over 60% of our current workforce is elegible to retire next year. We are not very good at succession planning.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I did not use such networks until I started workign for the government. I didn't see the need. In retrospect, I think I should have. Perhaps I could have been smarted about the career choices I made.

I have met some pretty incredible women though and am thankful for that. Just because one turns 50 doesn't mean one is dead.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
The most important thing is to spend time and effort to figure out what makes you happy, what you like to do and what you are good at. Not what others tell you you should do, what genuinely makes you happy.
Armed with that invaluable information, one can make sound rational decisions about life and careers. I have seen too may people pursue a dream of someone else's only to find in mid life that they aren't really happy with the cohoices they have made.
Life is too short. Spend the time up front to figure it out. That will make the rest of life much easier, and hopefully less painful.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. I was the only one. I didn't look into women role models until I started working. I was competing with myself and my peers and didn't think about being a woman until several years into my career.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Absolutely. I have seen several of my male colleagues go through sticky divorces. Their performance has declined, their health deteriorated and everyone looks the other way.
Younger women engineers seem to think that they are immune from the discrimination issues. They don't realize that they are being set up to hit a ceiling. But the time they do, it is too late to develop the skill set or habits needed to be a successful manager.
Women in mid career have either resigned themselves to not making it into management or have developed health issues. I suspect that when their parents become ill, that will spark a personal crisis for them. I have seen this happen to a number of women in my organization. Most have left the workforce or started their own companies.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
It depends on the task or issue. I enjoy both types of work settings.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
2002


Submitted August 29, 2002, 2:03 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. I was encouraged by my parents. My mother worked as a scientist until I was born (for her generationg it was not very acceptable to work after having children) and I think that served as a strong inspiration for me. I think my parents encouraged me to pursue whatever intersted me but taught me to appreciate many things from a scientific viewpoint. My father was an engineer, but he was very knowledgeable about the natural world, teaching me much about plants and animals as a young child. I think my love of the outdoors was inspired by the walks we took together and certainly influenced my career choice in geology.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes. I received support from undergraduate professors to not give up when things were difficult. At the graduate level I recall one professor on the first day I met him telling me he thought I was Ph.D. material. Prior to that I really hadn't felt I was "good enough" to work toward a Ph.D.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After graduating with a Ph.D. I worked for 1.5 years as a postdoc. I felt it was a good break from being a student. I met many influential people in my field of science. I had time to publish some of my graduate research as well as work on exciting new projects. I have also stayed in close contact with many of the other postdocs I worked with. They realy helped me form a network early in my career. I then went on to a tenure track position at a unviersity. I have been very successful with funding and research throughout my 15 years at the university. Most recently I have been doing more program administration, which I feel I do not like as much as teaching or research. I suppose people would consider me a pioneer in science at my university. I was the first female hired into a tenure-track position in my department and the first female scientist at the university to achieve the rank of full professor. I have never regretted my career choice and have really found through the years how suited I am to my job. I enjoy the mix of research, teaching and mentoring I do. It is refreshing to see more women entering the sciences.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I do not feel my career has been hampered by the fact that I am a woman. But I think this may have to do with some special circumstances. First, I think I am fairly driven and like to take control (perhaps more male traits) and have always seemed to have gotten along well with men. I have few close female friends, perhaps because I am a little "different". Second, I am tall (6 feet) and I think that brings respect from colleagues and students. Third, I think male geologists are somewhat different than other male scientists. They tend to be understanding and supportive.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes. The change is for the better. When I look back at the difficulties facing my mother in the 1950's I know we have come a long way. For example, she had an MS degree and my father had a BS, but she was not paid as much as he was until they were married (and they thought they might compare paychecks!). She was often discouraged from pursuing research by her mentors and colleagues. In my lifetime I've certainly seen the number of women in science increase and think that has influenced the attitudes of male scientists. I don't think males view females as being scientists as that unusual anymore. I do think, however, this is not as true for female engineers (my sister is one), since their numbers are so much smaller. I think the changes in engineering have been less dramatic.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
In high school there was only one other girl who went through all the math classes with me. Although we worked together, our advanced classes were very small (4-5 students)and so I think we all worked to pull each other through. At the university I roomed with female science/engineering students. We supported one another, but not to the exclusion of not networking with males. In our difficult, upper division courses the whole class had to work together to get through. In graduate school there was only one or two female students I networked with. They completed their MS degrees and left before I finished my MS, so that by the time I started my PhD I really didn't have any females left around to network with. I was the only female postdoc in the group I worked with and the only female faculty member in my department when first hired at my university. Since then several other women have joined the faculty. We certainly network and I also have been involved in mentoring activities with other female faculty/students within science and engineering.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Have faith in yourself. Do not sell your abilities short. You have thinking, observational and communication skills that you can use to excell. Do not be afraid to ask for help or advice. Try to find a mentor. They do not have to be female, but they should help you explore your career posibilities, help you focus on improving both your strengths and weaknesses and be willing to listen.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. There were no women scientists or engineers teaching at the university level when I attended classes. Often I was the only woman in my classes. I did have several close female friends in undergraduate and graduate school majoring in science and we provided each other with support. I never took a class in the history of women in science and engineering. Interestingly, I have been asked a number of times to speak about the subject. Since my mother had been a scientist, I was quite aware that women could be scientists. She made me aware of a number of famous women scientists. I
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes. I know there have been opportunities I have turned down (e.g. consulting jobs, service on national committees) because they required too much time away from my family. For example, I try not to be away from home more than 2 weeks at a time. But I don't regret the choice. I think raising a family has been easier for me in the university setting because I have the flexibility to stay home with sick children, I can spend long periods of time with my children in the summer, and I can even bring them to work. My colleagues at the university have been supportive of my role as a mother. The university has on-campus day care and both the chair and dean had no problems with me having my children in my office when they were young. I also owe a lot to my husband. He has been very willing to assist in child care duties. He is self employed and has the flexibility to be at home when the children come home from school. Early in my career he worked as research faculty, but never felt the need or inclination to move into a tenure-track position. When our son was discovered to have learning and emotional disabilities, he left the university setting so he could spend more time at home with him. I think it takes a very understanding partner to make a successful balance between career and family.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked with several colleagues, as well as by myself. I think I am somewhat of a loner, but I also enjoy the collaboration. Collaboration with other colleagues has been crucial in my work in international locations. However, I also enjoy working with colleagues within my university on local issues. I think one of the keys to my success has been that I collaborate with geologists, computer scientists and engineers in fields different from mine on projects that tend to bridge disciplines.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1984


Submitted January 28, 2003, 8:05 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
The public school system in South Dakota did not directly encourage young women to pursue careers in sciences or applied sciences, though they also did not choose to block participation in Math and Science competitions by the time I was involved. A Math competition actually was the source of a scholarship that assisted my first year of college.

My parents were supportive of all challenging intellectual pursuits for all their children. It was a source of much pride for them when I took advanced classes and placed high in "technical" competitions. Others in the family, were not so agreeable, and felt that it was a terrible waste to send me to an engineering school, even if I was mechanically and math inclined.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Some of the professors were openly supportive, some were privately supportive, and others were openly antagonistic.

I felt that the Chemical Engineering department chairman was openly supportive, and that is partly how I chose my major. He never talked down to the women he interacted with or the female students. As a father of three daughters, I think he realized that young women could be just as capable, and just as determined, as young men. Because of the Chemistry relationship, there also tended to me a more open attitude that was not necessarily seen in the Mechanical and Civil Engineering groups.

With hindsight, I do believe that some of the older professors had seen so many promising women start, and leave for various reasons, that they really didn't think it practical to encourage us too early. Many softened their attitudes as we became Juniors and Seniors.


Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Doing reserarch at a major chemical company with a BS in Chemical Engineering can be a challenge. But it can be done, and it can be enjoyed! I also found working in a processing plant to be a challenge -- there more because of my sex than my degree -- but I also found that like any other young engineer, I needed to prove that I had valid reasons for wanting to change things. There was a period of time when I didn't notice any specific antagonism in the work area, as long as I stayed within the group I worked with. (Not really an uncommon situtation regardless of sex, but it certainly felt like there might be some overtones.)

I chose to work part time while my children were toddlers, and that was the one time I wondered about my choice of career. I didn't especially feel encouraged or discouraged by most of my contacts at work during this time, but other mothers challenged my compulsion to return to the work environment.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I detested the concept of the "Mommy Track" and strongly resisted any inclination to label me as a part of such a group. (Youth and foolishness, combined with plenty of pride . . .)

I acknowledge that I made choices during the time my children were young that caused me to miss certain opportunities -- but in missing those opportunities others were made available. At some point, we all need to recognize what our goals are, what is the cost to achieve them (both personal and professional), and do we wish to pay that price? I have amended my choices, not because there isn't opportunity, but because I seek a different reward than I originally thought I wanted. There is plenty of opportunity there for all.

Ask me again in a few years when I get closer to retirement how I feel about this one!
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I believe there are more opportunities now than there were 25 years ago for all of us, and with fewer preconceptions about ability or appropriateness.

I also have matured and realize that not all opportunites are good for all of us. Choices we make shape what we will become, which I think makes some opportunities better for us later rather than earlier. Getting to this point hasn't been without frustration and sometimes personal pain, but that is true of virtually all professionals as they mature throughout their careers.

There is another learning that impacts my answer to this question -- we are all unique. What makes me happy, or envigorates me, may turn someone else off. I may miss an opportunity because of this, but so may another.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I have held onto some of my networks of other women engineers and scientists over the years, but not very many. It takes a fair amount of effort to network, to give as well as to receive, and there comes a time when a choice must be made. Networking was not a skill I learned early, and practiced often, so it was not particularly important to me for a number of years.

I actually have found that it is just as important to build networks with men, though certainly of a different style.

I lost contact with most of the high school networks, and early college networks, when I changed "home location" and went to work. I lost others when I became a parent, and gained new ones shortly thereafter. Each change in my life has precipitated a change in the people I want to network with -- some because they share an experience or situation -- and others because they don't.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Choose to study that which interests you, and seek to apply yourself to it, and it to the world, in a way you think will make you happy. But also remember to give yourself room to grow, and permission to change.

We can not all be the same thing, be that CEO or renowned researcher, because we are not all endowed with the same skills and experiences -- so be prepared to choose your own path. Don't quit the path just because it becomes rough, but don't follow a rough path "just because".

Write goals for yourself, but don't be limited by them. Use them as milestones, not mill-stones.

Seek advice, but don't be blinded to opportunities that mentors don't see, or don't see you doing well with. As an individual, you may bring something to the table that makes the incredible difference.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were two women engineers that I knew as an undergraduate -- which confirmed for me that graduation as an engineer could be accomplished by women. I did not know them well enough to consider them role models, and did not feel that I shared with them any particular bond beyond rarity.

I did not take any classes on the history of women in the sciences, though I did spend some time exploring the variety of contributions that had been documented as being done by women. Things appear much more clear now . . . but there was thrill in discovering them more on my own.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I made the choice to leave behind experimental chemistry during the time of my pregnancies. Why endanger the next generation with our ignorance, and just to prove a point?

Having made that choice, other work opportunities were leveraged, and some would say I've abandoned my training to live in the corporate zoo. Problem is, I still use many of the same skills and approaches learned over those years in school and in the plant, so I don't see it as being that much different. I have different responsibilities, and some days that is a plus in a two engineer household.

In the current corporate climate around diversity, I think there is more opportunity for young women to continue doing things that perhaps require more energy and more focus during such times. But they must have a support system. People who understand and can provide the appropriate assistance -- too much is as harmful as too little -- and since we are all individuals, it has to match both the giver and the receiver.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have rotated through many different groups during my career, so I can't say that I've worked particularly long with any individual. I have been forced to work mostly in team environments since leaving research.

I took up softball for a number of years, to re-enforce the team mentality. Most of the sports or leisure activities after high school for me had been solitary -- so I needed the re-enforcement. Leveraging that was helpful to my children, as well as to my career.

I try very hard to acknowledge people I used to work with when I see them -- mostly because I've learned that life is full of circles and you may end up working with them again, whether you want to or not. Knowing that, being perceived as part of the team is a benefit.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1975


Submitted August 20, 2002, 11:25 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
As a young girl I was not encouraged to or not to pursue a career in the sciences. However as I reached high school I was very much encouraged to pursue engineering as my future field. My high school teachers and even my parents were pretty supportive about me going into engineering.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I very much so received support from my college professors to pursue a career in the science. I went to school for engineering so I was already pursuing my career in the sciences prior to getting out into the work force.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have worked as a Senior Inspector in the construction industry as well as a project engineer in transportation for a consultant since I finished my degree. I do believe that both were very supportive of me pursuing my career. I receive support from my peers as well as higher up in management. It is a very condusive to support your career goals.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I realized this when I was working an inspection job under a supervisor for the state. My immediate supervisor, an engineer, told me that women should be a woman's profession like teaching, nursing, or staying home and should not be an engineer. He said this to my face and from that moment on, I lost all respect for him.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I am relatively fresh out of college so for myself my opportunities have not really changed over time because I don't have that timely experience.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
During the early stages of education on through to high school that network wasn't as important to me as it is now. Throughout college that network became a staple. Now I couldn't do day to day things without speaking with someone within that network. Everyone needs a network of people that totally get it, and that is mine.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
I would tell them to go for it! They can do anything that they want to do. Just be persistant about what they want and stand up for themselves when the going gets tough! Generally speaking in my short span of a career so far I have only had 2 instances where I had problems!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
When I attended college there were 2 women professors in engineering. One was especially supportive and was a sponsor of the Society of Women Engineers. I did not take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering. I do not believe that such was offered. I did learn about some accomplishments of women in engineering through the Society of Women Engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I believe so. I do not have children, but some of my friends do, and it does seem to hold them back to a certain extent. They had to think about their families before they just jetted off to do out of town work, or something as simple as overtime.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I do prefer to work individually because sometime I just feel that it will get done faster and more efficiently if I just do it myself. This is something that I have had to put a lot of effort into to correct. I have had to realize that I cannot do it all. I have to let others get in on the action also.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
2000


Submitted August 20, 2002, 3:52 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No I was not.
The thinking of the school councilor was that the kid will do the same thing as their parent.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No.
Most of the professors energy was told the males.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
No.
In fact this was area of disencouragement.
Work thought the only place for a lady was at home.
They though women had no dedication toward work.
And there were no role models.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes.
From day one at work and the assignments they let me work on. Other words, not challenging.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
No.
Opportunities remain the same.
Most place will not talk opportunities because they think women are not dedicated enough.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I would think it would be very important.
Presently, they only play a small part in my life.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
The road is rough.
Don't let anyone take credit for the work you do.
Learn to speak out and don't be timid.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No.
The only women on campus was at the library.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No.
What dictated the work I did was who would hire me ... period.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I've always worked as a individual.
I've never led anyone over these past 29 years and a doubt now that I will.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2000


Submitted August 19, 2002, 3:29 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No. I blew the curve for Chem II in high school, took Bio I and II in H.S.,
placed out of a majors bio course in college, and not once did someone say, "Have you
considered going into science?" I was encouraged to be a writer or to go into law.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No. I was an English major for undergraduate work.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
In graduate school, I found that my advisor was prone to treating the male graduate
students in my lab who were direct or straightforward as being smart, able, competitive,
admirably aggressive; when I, as a female, exhibited the trait in a fairly mild degree, I was
labeled as a potential problem-maker (although I never turned out to be one). I have often found this
labeling double-standard, where women who are direct and competitive receive negative labels while the
men who are receive admiration and respect. Perhaps as I advance in my career, this situation will change.
I also at one point was discussing my completion of my Ph.D. work with one of my advisors (I was making the argument
that I had done more than enough for the Ph.D.) and mentioned in passing that one of my immediate short-term goals
as a 34-yr-old was to conceive a child with my husband; this male advisor told my primary advisor that I wanted to
leave school because I wanted to have children, as though the two things could not coincide and never had in the
history of women in science.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I believe that the access issues center on perceptions based on sex. As a competitive, competent
female, I was viewed differently by older scientists versus their view of a competitive competent male.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I can't really answer this question having just gotten my Ph.D.
in 2001 and obtained a tenure-track position.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I had no networks in grammar or high-school; as an undergraduate, I was an
English major (although I placed out of majors bio and took courses for majors). In
graduate school, the female faculty were generally more competitive than receptive, and
there weren't really any networks dedicated to female students. I think we had a Women in Science
program, but they did a lot of worthless potluck dinner stuff that wasn't very helpful.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Don't feel that social constraints should somehow force you to "tone down" your
competitiveness or personality. Do your work carefully and well, think as often as you act,
be direct without being confrontational. Don't let anyone tell you that you "can't do science" or give
you that impression. Do what YOU want to do in a science field that YOU choose; don't let mentors
or advisors choose your research plan for you. Step carefully in every move you make, from choosing teachers
and schools to choosing advisors or research programs if you go to graduate school. If you become a leader, researcher
or faculty member, reach out to women coming up behind you. They are not your competition, they are our future.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. I can only address my experience as a graduate student in biology. Our department had
only two female professors, and my impression of them was that they saw me and other graduate
women more as competition than as subjects for mentoring. I had one of the women on my committee, and she
pretty much appeared to do the best she could to belittle me. It's not that she was justifiably hard on me and
that I resent it; she was just notably nonsupportive and condescending.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No. I have just obtained a tenure-track position at a university, giving my
job talk during my sixth month of pregnancy, and the chair of the dept at this school
has been very willing to work with me. I continue to teach and do my research as my due date nears, as
I did with my first child.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes. I enjoy using the collaborative nature of science to conceive ideas and
plan protocols; however, for the actual hands-on work, I prefer to lead a team
of my own graduate and undergraduate students.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
2001


Submitted September 29, 2002, 12:03 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, I was encouraged to pursue a career in the sciences by both my parents and my science teachers from grade school through high school. I had female science teachers throughout my pre-college academic career and was always encouraged by them to participate in science fairs, help out in their classrooms, serve as a "science aide" during my study hall, and strive for excellence in my work. My parents also encouraged me and sent me to science camps in grade school and an engineering camp for girls in high school. They were always looking for opportunities where I could be exposed to various careers and encouraged me to set my sights high.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I don't feel like I received much support from my college professors; however, I did not seek out much interaction with the faculty at my institution. I never felt like I was discouraged by the faculty. I just never felt encouraged, either.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I co-oped at The Dow Chemical Company in Freeport, Texas while in school at The University of Texas at Austin. My co-op positions were as follows:

1. Production Engineering - working in a production plant and helping with the day-to-day operations

2. Research Engineering - working on new processes and testing new materials and evaluating conditions in an effort to improve an existing plant

3. Process Engineering - designing equipment, optimizing processes, and evaluating systems

I have worked in several different areas since graduating with a BS in Chemical Engineering in 1993. I hired on with The Dow Chemical Company in Freeport, Texas in the Process Engineering Department, the same one I'd co-oped in for my 3rd co-op term. I did everything there from designing equipment to running simulations on processes to leading multi-million dollar expansion projects. In this role, I also became involved in Corporate Recruiting and assisted in the management of the Dow Co-op Program in Freeport. After 4.5 years in Process Engineering, I moved into a research and development group - Epoxy New Business Development. In this role, I assisted with the evaluation of a new biodegradable epoxy and worked with customers in an effort to get them to convert to our product in their processes.

After 1.5 years in Epoxy New Business Development, upon the completion of an MBA I'd worked on part time while working full time, I took a job at The University of Texas at Austin as the Director of Engineering Scholarships and Undergraduate Recruiting. I was responsible for the multi-million dollar Engineering scholarship program and for attracting high SAT score students to the College of Engineering. After 1 year in this role, the Engineering Fellowship program was added to my responsiblities. In the summer of 2001, I took over as Director of the Women in Engineering Program where I am responsible for the recruitment and retention of women within the College of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I have never felt discriminated against because of my gender. While I was in industry, I was able to lead projects where I was the only female engineer. I was respected for my work and my leadership and was rewarded on the same levels as my male counterparts. I was fortunate to have wonderful supervisors throughout my career in industry and always felt confident and comfortable with the work I did, the projects I led, and the other engineers with whom I worked.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, my opportunities have changed over time. This has been due to the career choices and decisions I have made. For example, now that I have moved into academia, it may be difficult for me to go back into industry in a technical role, thus changing the opportunities that I may have available to me.

I feel the changes have been for the better as I always enjoy the new challenges that come with change. I always enjoy working on new things and learning new concepts. New and changing opportunities keep everything fresh!
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
The networks I have are incredibly important to me and have been key to the career path I have taken. It truly is "who you know" in many cases. I owe much of my education and background to a wonderful support network through the Society of Women Engineers. I took college courses based on feedback from my network of classmates and recent engineering graduates. I found my first co-op position due to the network my engineering college roommate had. I got my first full-time engineering job based on my co-op work and my network of past supervisors and co-workers who knew the quality of my work. I got my second job within Dow based on the network I had created within the company and the help of others who knew the quality of my work. And I got my jobs within UT due to the network I had within the College of Engineering and the contacts I had maintained since graduating.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Don't limit yourself. The opportunities for engineers and scientists are unlimited. Take advantage of every opportunity to learn new things, experience various types of jobs, and to utilize the networks you have within your reach. Don't be afraid to ask for help and never be afraid to utilize the networks you have to help you get where you want to be.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes, I did encounter woman scientists who were role models. I co-oped in industry and had several female supervisors and co-workers who provided guidance, insight into engineering careers, and support in my career. I did not take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering; however I probably would have had there been the opportunity. My only learning about the accomplishments of women scientists and engineers has come from reading books on the subject or learning about it through participation in the Society of Women Engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I had moved from industry to academia by the time I started a family. I was married while in industry, however my husband worked also and we had similar schedules and demands. In academia, I have the flexibility that I may or may not have attained in industry. I am currently able to adjust my schedule as necessary as family needs arise. I have the full support of both my supervisor and my staff and am able to place a priority on my family.

I don't see that my having a family is affecting my current work, but it does affect the types of jobs that I may choose to do in the future. For example, I will not take on any responsibility that requires me to travel for any length of time as long as I have young children at home. I want to be home and nearby while my children are young and I don't want a job that will take me away from them. I view this as a personal choice and not a choice that has been thrust upon me due to the gender I happen to be or the degree I happen to have. Whether I was in science or the arts, my choice in this would be similar.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked on projects where I may be the only Design Engineer or where I may be one of many. I've worked in teams of 2 and teams of 50 plus. I don't think there is a project out there where you can work solely as an individual. Part of the work may require you to work on your own, but inevitably, you'll always need to be getting customer feedback, supervisor or co-worker approval or feedback, or team feedback. Today it would be really hard to work in isolation.

Personally, I enjoy working in a team. I enjoy the diversity of thought when a team comes together. I enjoy observing team dynamics and helping to facilitate team discussions and team descision making and problem solving. I thrive on interaction!
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1999


Submitted December 12, 2003, 4:04 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
yes, i was encouraged succesfully to develope my career in the chemistry by my parents, school, Youngth Creative Palace, different olimpiads and competitions
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
of course, i did. There is different types of supports - Student research, participations to cnferences, publications, contacts with outstanding Scientists
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
yes, my work enviroment encourage to my career. i myself limited my expansion when it was be nessesary and more benefic ial for futural targets. My career was engaged step by step; researcher- PhD-senior reseacher- leading scientist or associate professor- full professor now. I am Head of Intersubject Research Laboratory that was organised by my efforts, Projects-leader, Coordinater of several sci Programms.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Perhaps, it was lacky, I worked with clever advisers, executed all rational admissions exectly and in time. I produced ideas when i could make it myself. It is need to have strong administrative support, wide fruitful cooperation and to have own "grotto" when you are the best {one of the best} but sometime you have to remainin in the backgraund. i think there is ordinar tactic both for man and women. sure, this behavior is more easy and pleasant for women.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
i drive of my time myself mainly
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
it wos not too important
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Excellent knowledge, notable aims, patience and kind relations with people undepend upon gender, charming image with solid but flexible character
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
i have not any models at my university, a lot of excellent women -scientists worked there normally. However i remember forever about S.Kovalevskaya, M.Cury, E,Dashkova and oth. naturally, i fond of magnific accomplishments of scientists undependently upon their gender
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
no
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
i am working with perfect team always
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1972


Submitted August 15, 2002, 9:27 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was encouraged to be an electrical engineer like my father who sometimes helped with my homework. My mother was not scientifically inclined, but she always said that we could achieve anything if we tried hard enough. That wasn't surprising since she was one of the first woman executives at Sears in the 1950s.

I became interested mathematics. Then, in 1973, my high school purchased one of the first less-expensive computers available. I found Basic programming interesting but didn't like paper storage tapes.

Most teachers were very encouraging to all students. However, at that time, there were few women teaching the sciences/ applied sciences.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Most of my professors were very encouraging to all students and available to provide additional assistance after hours. I occasionally used this assistance, but mostly students assisted each other via study groups.

This was true for both my bachelors in mathematics/ psychology and my masters in systems engineering.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
For over 20 years, I worked for GTE performing real-time simulations, traffic analysis, switch sizing, requirements analyis, prototyping, integration testing, trade studies, software architectures, database design, technology research, technical writing, web site design, technical marketing, and business development. My most interesting project was the first integrated voice and data telephone switch. This is now in the Smithsonian Institution. I was encouraged by most of my GTE managers. I only had one experience of sexual discrimination.

For 2 years, I have been working as a consultant for TRW and the American Red Cross. Most of the managers have been very encouraging, but I have encountered more sexual discrimination from other consultants than I ever did at my previous company.


Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I always had access to the same opportunities as my male colleagues. If a person stood in my way, I could always find a way around them. Once can go over or under walls as well as through them.

With that said, male colleagues and managers often didn't comprehend career women. Once, when my husband and I were moving, my manager told me that we should live near my husband's job because, after all, he was the one who would continue working all his life.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, as a consultant, it seems like I have fewer opportunities for advancement.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Until the last five years, I did not have any network composed primarily of women. In my first job, I was one of two women in a 60 person department. Later, I worked with teams that were 85% male. It wasn't until I started consulting that I worked in an environment that is over 50% women.

Now, I belong to a group called Women In Technology. However, less than a third of that group is technically oriented. The rest have soft skills.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Believe in yourself.
Engage several male and female mentors.
Know your competitors.
Understand that most men look for superiority while most women look for common ground.
Watch nonverbal cues.
Network for opportunities.
Help others.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I had no women role models except for perhaps one graduate student. There were 20% women at the university I selected, and few women in the sciences/ applied sciences. In 1976, I received a standing ovation for being the only woman in a Calculus class.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I was never lucky enough to have children.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work with multi-disclinary teams focusing on both team and personal goals.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1990


Submitted August 20, 2002, 1:52 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
My parents (mostly my father) encouraged me to pursue
sciences and math. I believe that they noticed that I
had an ability to do well in those subjects. Teachers
and friends of the family did not encourage me any
more or less than they did with other more traditional
subjects.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
When I was in college getting my science degree, I felt
like there were plenty of women doing all types of
things in many fields. There were as many women in my
classes as there were men. Although I didn't perceive
myself as being supported, I think I was. I had many
female science and math instuctors and I think that
fact alone supported me in my pursuits.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
For the most part, my career as a woman scientist and
engineer has been full and without extraordinary trials
because I was a female. I don't feel like my
opportunties were withheld from me because I am a
female. I feel like I had the same amount of
opportunities as my male colleagues. I have had
experiences when I had been treated differently than a
male colleague because of my sex. In those instances,
the work that I did was the same as my male colleagues. The only difference was that
I had additional obstacles to overcome such as
someone else's biases to overcome. One of these types
of experiences feels horrible and discouraging. It
takes alot out of you in terms of emotional and
psychological energy.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
There were times prior to my college education that I
realized that opportunties were not going to be the
same for me as they were for males. I was particularly
affected by not being allowed to play in Little League
baseball. I was better than most of my male friends,
not to mention more motivated.

None of my academic experiences made me feel like I had
less opportunity than my male colleagues. Luckily,
most of my work experiences were also fair. As I have
explained, I do not feel as if opportunities were
foreclosed to me because I am female. I do feel that
many of the opportunities that I have been given were
made substantially harder because of my sex. I believe
women have to deal with a lot more adversity than men.
That adversity has a cost but it also makes women who
can overcome it very strong.


Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I don't see my opportunities as changing with time.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I think that my experience working with other women
during college and graduate school years was very
helpful.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If you are interested in the work, anything that you
want to do is available to you. Do the best job that
you can do to prepare yourself academically. Be
willing to do a good job and work hard when you get the
chance.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
The many female science and math instuctors that I
studied under were role models. No specific classes
were offered dealing with women in science. I think
I was exposed to women is sciene through these
instructors. They did promote the history of women
in science by posting photos and information.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I don't have a family but I know that those who do have
to consider how their work will affect their family
lives. Everybody handles this there own way. I see
other constraints other than family life having an
equal effect on work.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked with many people over time. I have
worked in a team atmoshpere with the same people for
years and I have worked individually. I like having a
mixture of things environments in.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1987


Submitted March 6, 2003, 11:06 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
no, I was not encouraged, however, I was not discouraged. Pursueing a career in engineering is a result of my interest and enjoyment of higher math. One thing lead to another. I chose engineering, and particularly civil engineering based on curriculum requirements (I knew I could do well with the course work), and my love of outdoors. Construction related to civil engineering would lead me to an occupation where I could spend time out of doors.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
yes. all of me professors supported me as well as my male couterparts. I do not believe I received special support. My drive to compete my education in my chosen field was very strong, and I never deviated from it.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My employer fully supported me, and provided me the same opportunities as my male couterparts. I was given leadership opportunities at the same rate as male couterparts.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
My employer has always been supportive of my career. However, my choice to "be there" for my children has not always been in agreement with upper management. My need to be involved in my chilren's lives led to a part-time arrangment with my employer. I feel I am not as valued as a fulltime employee. Male colleagues seem to have little or no guilt being an absentee parent, working and traveling such that the spouce must take over child rearing. These men are valued more highly than female colleagues who deny such a work environment.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
See response to question 6.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Helped to boost moral and self esteem. I did/do not have an extensive network, but I value those few I have. Women in civil engineering are less than 10% of the work force. There are not many women to network with.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Have high self-esteem. There will be many occasions where you will question your "fit" in this male dominated field.
If you marry, have children, and wish to continue your career, it is imperative that you have a very supportive mate.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I took no courses in the history of women in the sciences, but I would have found such courses interesting. I had one female professor during college. I did not consider her a role model. However, fellow female students (there were very few) provided support, especially those upperclassman.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes. Since having children, I have chosen to work part-time. My employer has generally been supportive of this decision. However, my career advancement has stopped. I no longer have the leadership roles I once had. The type of projects I am assigned are not as fast track as if I were full time.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Team work is most important. My type of work requires interaction with many different individuals.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)



Submitted January 16, 2003, 4:47 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
no -- in high school and college (in the '50s) women were mostly groomed to be wives and mothers; perhaps working as teachers or nurses until then. However, I always did well in science and thought this was a profession in which I could support myself (I was a scholarship student from a poor family).
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
not very strongly. However, when I stated my desire to go to Graduate School, they wrote good recommendations and I was able to get a Fellowship for Graduate work.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I always liked school and did well there. Like my peers, I marrried right after college graduation ('58!), but luckily my husband supported my continuing my education. In fact, he switched into science studies due to my influence. The places I did my graduate work were influenced by where he went for his graduate work. I just followed, and was able to get fellowships where he was studying. My first position post graduate position was as a research associate-- a quasi-faculty position. So was my second, again following in the role of the dutiful spouse. It was only after my divorce that I applied for, and found a tenure-track position, from which I have just retired. At the college where I taught for nearly 30 years, I was treated fairly, promoted rapidly, and served for a while as Chair of my Department. I had both male and female colleagues and an excellent work environment.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes -- during the 6 years after I left graduate school and had positions as a "research associate." My male colleagues did not find positions based on where their spouses worked, while this was a limitation (albeit self-chosen at the time).
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Once I found my niche in an academic department, I did not look beyond for additional opportunities.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
not important at all
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it. I'm sure it is easier today than it was nearly 50 years ago when I started college.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?

all my professors were male. I did meet one woman professor who was a guest lecturer in a course during my senior year. When I got to graduate school, I was influenced by older female students who encouraged me to continue my studies. Athough only 1-2 years older, they were my role models. as to the other two questions, no and no.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I raised one daughter, and I am pleased to say that having a child did not affect my career. Luckily the academic schedule is flexible and being in a Professorial position was very helpful.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
No. I usually did research in the summers as a visiting research scientist, and have had a number of successful collaborations. I prefer a small team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1964


Submitted January 4, 2004, 12:45 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
yes, to participate in campfire girl geoscience activities, then coursework through jr high to high school which placed me in advanced science and math at a school for "gifted" kids. finally, what sinched the deal was a wonderful professor (my advisor) who encouraged me to stick with college and science (as I was apparently somehow good at it) following the loss of my father.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
as mentioned above, it took only one professor, Dr. James Walters, to show kindness and interest in a promising student--he informed me of not only the coursework in the natural sciences, but also introduced me to other female students and the one female faculty member who provided a fantastic support network. (there were 3 girls to 1 guy in nearly all of my geology courses).

lastly, I won a full-tuition scholarship to the university I attended for four years, from the earth science department. what was so wonderful was that this did not limit me to one aspect of geoscience, but to the whole natural science field. I began studying biology/genetics, but following one geology class, I switched to geology and never looked back (even left a budding music career with the symphonies in the area).
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I completed a BS in geology concurrent with a BA in music, followed by a MS in geology, whereby I continued further uppergrad work. I worked for 4 years on a PHD, but left to pursue a more lucrative career in the petroleum industry. I found that the "benefits" that students received were too few to continue my studies (i.e. the medical care was abomidable...my insurance failed to cover two necessary surguries that removed cancer from my body). In this case, the work environment was ok, but deterred by the poor conditions for student teachers and researchers campus-wide. I was completely broke and my research funding did not cover medical expenses and did not cover my bills. I never did complete my dissertation and am haunted by dreams of incomplete coursework, years later.

I now have a great job with "big oil" and really enjoy it. I have excellent medical benefits & am not questioned when I've had to take leave for medical problems.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I never felt restricted on the basis of my gender from anyone at school. It was several female family members who discouraged me from attending school, saying that I couldn't afford it and that I would never finish (as a good girl should get married, have babies, and be a good farm wife). consequently, I have done my best to prove them wrong. I now take up quilting just to smite them :) (hahaha, I love quilting and baking, and still digging a good soil pit at the days end).

I have always had good opportunities, e.g. scholarships, internships, a good support network, role-models, and mentors.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
yes, it keeps getting better. (aside from the occasional good ol boy "ass grab")
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
the highest importance for me was in graduate school.

any encouragement at any level of my life was great...whether it was from a male or female.

networking became critical while studying for a ph.d. & in my current career path.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
perserverance. don't let the low stats let you believe that women don't have a precense in the sciences. what is typically shown (statistically) is the lack of women pursuing a career in the geosciences (other sciences have a much greater % of women).

Also, YOU CAN DO MATH!!! you do it everyday!! do not ever think that it is outside of your ability. math is the key to any scientific sucess (on any level). whether you master more simplistic math (pre-algebra) or take it to higher levels...vector calculus and beyond...thinking quantitatively is within your grasp. if at first you don't succeed, get a tutor and make it happen.

find a mentor or let yourself be found! you can go your education alone, but why should you. support is everywhere.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
honestly, we had one full professor that was a women and I never took a class from her. she was an excellent role model though and supportive to all students (not only to those enrolled in her classes). The dept was small but she had a strong precense. There was one other female on staff as an adjunct/temp instructor. Barb was a great gal, but favored the female students a bit much at times...therefore leading the few guys in the class to calling her inappropriate names.

during my MS schooling, there was only one female faculty member and she was a cut-throat, paranoid abomination (ok, that's a bit harsh...she was very paranoid and cut-throat). She often placed her students in between herself and several of the older, more established male faculty. She was not on my committee or teaching any of my classes, but she somehow left me feeling insecure and a bit frightened to run into her, for fear that she would vent her open hositility on me (or any of the other students..male or female).

while studying for my ph.d., I interacted with several female faculty in the geosciences. they were all top-notch researchers. many of which had a great work-life balance and were an inspiration. on the rough days..where I may have doubted my own intelligence or questioned my career path, there were two women who kept me going in my career.

no classes were offered on the history of women in science/engineering. in fact, I'm not sure that there were any women's history at two of the schools that I attended. I know that my first college had a fantastic women's ed. program.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
absolutely not. I am uncertain as to whether or not I can have kids, so that isn't on the forefront of my goals/expectations. my family now knows of physical limitations and does not pose the inevitable question "when are you getting married? how soon til you have babies?"

the women I have known with families and dual career marriages have taken 6mos to a year's leave, but always go back and manage to pick up where they left off. They have a good work/life balance.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
either is fine, but I guess if I had to choose, a team is more fun, more productive and more of a challenge.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2002


Submitted August 21, 2002, 11:43 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes -- my father encouraged me to pursue a career in engineering. I would help him with projects around the house, and he noticed my mechanical skills.

In high school, my male counselor, did not really encourage me -- I pursued drafting and electronic classes to help me before attending college. He did however encourage me with my pursuing of the Academic Honors diploma.

Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes -- I had several supporting professors in college. I went to Purdue University Calumet, and the professors were willing to help you with homework and pursuing goals

There was only one female professor (PhD) and she was GREAT! Very supportive to all students and GREAT ME classes. She was also the sponsor for the SWE student section.

She always encouraged us to further pursue a Masters after receiving our Bachelor's. Or to at least take continuing education classes.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I pursued a sales engineering position after college. Initially I didn't want to be in design, and truly enjoyed working with customers.

I have gotten a lot of HVAC engineering experience and business experience. I am very thankful for these, they have shaped my mind and career so that I can continually move forward.

I look forward to eventually being a project manager and expanding my engineering experience -- possibly owning my own business -- pursuing my MBA.


Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I have encountered some minor discrimination from being a female in a male dominated company -- but I have overcome that and proven that I'm a team player -- currently the top sales person for my area (and only female sales engineer for the area).

Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes -- they seem to have improved. There seem to be a lot more opportunities for female engineers than ever before.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
These were very important. In college and now as a professional, I participate in the Society of Women Engineers.

You have to learn from each other -- and support one another.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
GO FOR IT!

Never give up on your dreams -- welcome the challenges and fight through the hard work and sweat to reach your goals.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes, again the female ME professor was FABULOUS! I still keep in contact with her today.

Also a colleague of mine whom I graduated with -- she was an excellent role model student -- she graduated with a BSME with a 3.94/4.0 - WOW!
She is one of my best friends today! We still encourage each other in our engineering fields/jobs.

Unfortunately they did not offer history of women in science/engineering -- I would have LOVED to take those classes.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes -- some companies are not flexible with women starting families -- needing part time or flexible schedules.

I have not started that path in my life yet, but withing the next 2 years I'll know more.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I don't have a preference. I find it is important to be able to do both.

You need to be able to function and produce independently in order to be an effective team leader.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
99


Submitted August 15, 2002, 9:55 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was encouraged to continue taking math & science courses. Based on a test taken in 6th grade, I was tracked into algebra in 7th grade. My group was a year or two ahead of other students, and we completed a full year of calculus while still in high school.
I was not encouraged to pursue any specific career until I received a brochure from Purdue's Women in Engineering program. This was when I first considered engineering (having ruled out medicine after taking advanced biology in high school).
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I entered Purdue's freshmen engineering program. There were some comments about the difficulty of the program from professors, and we knew there were weed-out courses, but I never felt it was directed at any one particular group. I was encouraged to continue by the Women in Engineering program.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I worked as an Industrial Engineer in manufacturing companies for 6 years following graduation - 3 years in a large aerospace firm and 3 years in small factories. I do not remember receiving any encouragement or discouragement from others. I chose to quit and return to graduate school because I did not enjoy this type of job. I found out that I loved manufacturing and working with employees on the shop floor, but I did not like working for a boss and dealing with the same people and same types of problems day after day. When I returned to graduate school, I wanted to get away from engineering, so I chose to get a PhD in Sociology. After a year in that program, I realized that I was a much better fit in Industrial Engineering because I have a very applied problem-solving orientation. I completed a master's degree in Sociology, then switched back to IE for a PhD. I'm now employed as an IE professor, and the job suits me. I love working with students, and I can still study and influence manufacturers through research.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
In my previous jobs in industry, I generally felt like I was treated equally. Now that I am in academia, there are a few annoying issues in my college. The Dean meets once each semester with a group he calls the Associates. These are people that donate a significant amount of money to the college. On two occasions when the Associates were in town, the female faculty in the college were invited to attend a social function (coffee and lunch) with the Associates' wives. This type of treatment is considered acceptable here - there is a lack of understanding about what's wrong with this. I do not have any evidence that I'm being treated unfairly in other more substantial ways (such as salary or lab space), but I suspect that it could be a problem.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not sure. I think I've always had opportunities available.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I became aware of the importance of knowing other women engineers in college. I was slightly active in SWE and very active in my sorority - Phi Sigma Rho - a sorority for engineers and technologists. I still keep in touch with many good friends from the sorority.
In graduate school, I was glad there were other women in the program to interact with. In taking my first academic job, I entered a department that already had one female professor. I think this was important. I would not have been happy about entering an all-male department. The female professors in my college do try to stick together. We get together for lunch periodically.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it. Talented people of diverse backgrounds need to be involved in science and engineering. Good solutions and designs and scientific breakthroughs depend upon varied experience and looking at problems in new ways.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I took a freshman-level seminar for women in engineering. We listened to female alums talk about their careers. These were positive role models for us even if we did not select their field of engineering.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
My husband and I chose not to have children. I can't imagine doing the work that I'm doing while also raising a family. I don't think there would be enough time - I think I would have had to scale back my career expectations. However, career is not the reason we chose not to have kids.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I do a lot of my work individually, but I am beginning to collaborate more with other faculty. I prefer a mixture of individual and team work.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
2000


Submitted August 19, 2002, 10:50 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was always encouraged to pursue a career in the sciences/applied sciences when I was a girl. I had a neighbor that was a science teacher and my father is an engineer and they always told me that I could do anything I put my mind to. Since I was interested in science and math throughout my schooling, I was encouraged to pursue such things at a higher level.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
When I first entered college, I knew I wanted to become an engineer and my professors always were willing to provide support and advice to me. Everyone was very helpful in trying to get me to succeed. I was also encouraged to join various clubs and organizations by my advisors and professors to help me gain contacts and help thoughout my college career.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I worked as an engineering intern for 2 1/2 years before I graduated. In my work environment, I was always encouraged to pursue my career as an engineer. There were times when I felt like some people didn't think I was capable of certain things because I was a woman but I always felt that I could do it and later proved to them that I was capable. These instances occured when sometimes upper management would feel that a project was out of my reach to handle, but I had my manager who had faith in me and pursuaded upper management to give the project to me and I completed it beyond expectations.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I do not feel that my career was hampered in any way due to the fact that I was a woman. I was hired on full time after I graduated and received the job over the other male intern. I feel that I have the same opportunities and access as my male colleagues. There are times when I feel outnumbered, but it is a fact that I am and all I can do is just stick up for myself and make it known that I deserve the same treatment as everyone else.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I feel that my opportunities as a female engineer haven't changed. They have always been equal to everyone else and they will most likely continue to get better.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Being a member of the Society of Women Engineers for 5 years in college and as a professional, it has been very helpful to me to see how advances are being made in other areas and as a support network for any potential problems. It was always great in school to get with the other girls and use them as a base to talk about various aspects of being a female in engineering.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Women are just as capable of doing anything a man can. You just have to go out and show them that you are dedicated and willing to learn. No girl should ever have any thoughts that they are smart enough or can't do the work. With a little hard work and a lot of perseverance, they can do it too.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I never really had any woman role models while I attended college. I was actively involved with the Society of Women Engineers where I met various professionals that gave advice and guidance about furthering my eduacation as an engineer and also, at the end of my college career, in entering the profession.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I do not think that raising a family will hamper my career in the future. I am extremely dedicated and I will try and find out suitable ways to divide my time equally between work and home.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work as a team. In my profession in the automotive industry, things to do get done without a group effort. Work starts with the Planners and Marketing Supervisors and trickles down to the Engineers. If there is a problem that needs to be solved, it is a team effort that involves everyone. In my profession, people skills are necessary to complete the job. Without working with other people, things do not get done properly.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
2002


Submitted April 29, 2003, 1:22 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes I was encouraged in the sciences as a girl. My mother was an MD & I was constantly asked if I was going to grow up to be a doctor like my mommy. She was rather disappointed that I did not go to medical school but my dad, also an MD, was delighted. He was experiencing a decreased quality of life because he was scheduled for a lot of on-call time. It limited the places he could go & things he could do.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
My professors were very supportive. I was a Chemistry & Geology double major. The Physics department recruited me heavily in my Sophmore year but I was already mentally committed to the Chem/Geo route.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After graduating from college, I accepted a position in an organic chemistry lab of a Fortune 50 company. I worked for a man that had recently moved from a university setting to an industrial one. He was used to having graduate students who worked incredibly long hours & were essentially self-directed. I did not enjoy the laboratory work & after 3 years, I accepted a position in the corporate library doing computer searches of the scientific literature. Many of the lab scientists counseled me not to accept this position not because I was female but because they did not believe anyone would be happy outside of the lab. I worked in the Library for 10 years - eventually becoming the Manager. I decided that I did not like managing a department & people so I migrated in the direction of computers/databases. Today I manage the Library database for a DC law firm, among other responsibilities.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
The first time I realized that my male colleagues were treated differently was when I read my first Chemical & Engineering News (publication of the American Chemical Society) salary survey & found out that, with the same education, I would be paid more if I was male.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
In listening to the stories that my mother tells about being in medical school in the 1950s & raising a family in the 1960s, things have definately improved in a general sense. For me specifically, I have never felt that I could not gain a position because I was female. I never felt that my gender would be held against me or hold me back.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
My family has always supported women in the sciences. My grandmother studied to be a chemistry major & my sister also graduated in chemistry. In my family, it was assumed that you would do well in school, no matter what subject. I did have female teachers in high school & college but their gender was not emphasized as odd, special or unusual.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Anything is possible
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I did have women professors as role models but we did not study the history of women in science. The university did offer womens courses but not specifically in the sciences. I do not remember any women scientists other than Marie Currie being highlighted in any courses.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I do not have a family but eventhough I am the major breadwinner in the family, I still do most of the cooking, grocery shopping, cleaning, laundry etc. around the house. This extra work has not made me change the type of work I do, I have refused promotions because I do not want to be in management because I don't want the added responsibilities. They can't pay me enought to be unhappy especially since I do not have children to support.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like to work as a team because that is the way to learn new skills the fastest. Unfortunately, I work in a type of job that does not offer many partnering opportunities. I am the only person at my company that knows anything about the software I support.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
1994


Submitted August 12, 2002, 8:13 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was strongly encouraged to go into engineering by my father who was also an engineer. My younger brother went into engineering also. On long car rides my father loved to make us do math word problems!
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I was a top student so I was encouraged by most of my professors. I had a male mentor my senior year.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I started out in the biotech industry, but quickly moved onto to the environmental field. I have worked for large and small businesses and as a consultant. I have worked part-time for the past 13 years which has allowed me to balance family/work life.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not much change
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
A female colleague was instrumental in getting me into the environmental area after the biotech industry didn't work out for me.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Engineering is a GREAT career for women. You can get an interesting, well paid job with only a Bachelor of Science level of degree. There are many different types of engineering jobs; anything from working outside on a construction site to working with computers or being involved in manufacturing an important consumer product.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were no female engineering professors at UCSD when I was there. A woman joined the ChemE faculty soon after I graduated.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Of course
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like to be part of the management team while having primary responsibility for environmental and safety matters.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1983


Submitted August 21, 2002, 2:39 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No. In fact I was refused entry into medical school because I was a woman. Women were supposed to be secretaries or teachers. Men were CEOs and managers. The only role model I ever saw was my Sunday School teacher who was head of a department at the West Texas Utilities--but worked under the control of 2 men. And she was a single person.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No. After my Masters degree my major professor told me to go work for a local agency, and take care of my family. I did not need to continue to pursue a PhD. I did not listen to her because I knew what I really wanted to do and was capable of doing.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
It has been hard. Never got the raises of the men. A man with one year less academic experience, same degree, same department, and I had more research publications and dollars--but he had salary $16,000/yr more than me. I have had 3 mail chairmen. Two were outstanding and more than fair. The other was abusive and cruel--and the women in the department finally got him removed. Not always easy to work in my work environment, but I have been able to stay focused, do a good job, and find satisfaction in my work to help make things better for students, those with whom I work with, and for society in general with my research. I would do it again, but I tell my students in conferences--don't you go out there and screw up because we have worked hard to get a place made for you to be on more equal grounds.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Probably from the beginning of my career. The salary is one thing, but opportunities to serve on "important committees" and be listened to as one with knowledge. The abusive chairman was terrible period of life--and the men above as well as dean would not listen to the tenured faculty and make a change. I guess it would make them look bad that they had hired this person. But my philosophy was--everyone makes mistakes, but we do not have to keep making more mistakes--so get rid of him. Definitely my career was hampered for 7 years in opportunities and by constant abuse not only to me but to some 40 other faculty with whom I worked. So the bottom line is that the administrators who were men would not listen to the women when they kept saying there was a problem.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes they have changed. As I became stronger individual and more confident things changed and for the better. Women in general are not given the same message of confidence by society as men. So we have to work harder to recognize that we are knowledgeable, and can stand up for our work and selves.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
None in high school None in college. In graduate school I made some strong friends that I still visit and discuss research. Especially at scientific meetings I spend time with other women discussing our work and related issues. We were not taught about networks in high school or college. I try to teach my students today about networking--and I see it happening more often.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Probably be sure you have good understanding of the differences in how men and women work and how they behave in general. Good psychology course in behavior of humans would be beneficial. Develop sense of self worth, self confidence and know who you are and what your goals in life are. Be sure your spiritual side as well as your physical and psychological side of life are continually enriched. Know it is not easy to work in these fields, but understand you can perform at the very top level. Always be honest not only to your work, but yourself. And remember we only have today--so in your work and away from work make it the very best you can for yourself, your family, and society. Remember we are here to make life better for others.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
My role model was a biochemist who taught nutrition. She was and is marvelous. I had a biology teacher who was a woman (her dad was president of a university so that played a large role in her life). Neither of these women were married. Couldn't be married and succeed was the philosophy given to women.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I guess some women are affected by the demands of a family. I am extremely fortunate to have a wonderful husband who believes in sharing all of the work load of rearing a family, and does more than his share when I have heavy work demands--like trying to get a grant written with no help from the university in terms of staff or other kinds of support. That is a difficult task because classes go on, research goes on, family goes on--and grant due dates come! We laugh that if women all arrived home to find dinner on the table, the cleaning done, the laundry, repair and bills all seen to--we could do more. But I have enjoyed the best of all with a wonderful husband, absolutely marvelous children who completed college and are great citizens contributing to society, and a job that I really believe is helping make life better for others. What more could one have! Maybe I have not been able to get as big of grants as some others, but hey--I have stayed afloat and had absolutely marvelous grad students who are rising stars in the field.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked with colleagues over a long time. One outside of the university setting in research for over 18 years; others for several years. I do not believe a research project can be accomplished alone. It takes more than one brain to do a good job. I like to do research with others--they are creative, inspiring--they teach me every day--and they provide the great wealth of energy and drive that helps us all be successful. I like people, but I am selective about the people I choose to work with. The individuals must work--I have had some who did not work, or put off doing things--and I did not choose to work with them again. They were too high maintenance individuals.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd



Submitted June 24, 2003, 2:34 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No, I was not encouraged to pursue a career in science. It is very strange because I was always encouraged to study science and read about science as a child by my parents and then in school they always favored my studies in science over math or english howver it was never discussed that I could have a career in science.

I would say it got worse as I got older in HS and my teachers saw that I had an extreme curiousity. They thought I should be completely accepting of what was taught and I was discouraged from asking question. "Why can't you just study quietly like the boys?" I was asked.

I want to add in HS I was the only student to take all 4 AP courses for 4 years in my class. I was curious about everything!!

College I steered clear. But I returned after my BS program to a pre-med certification program and I was told by my "ancient" male advisor that women were not menat to be M.D.s

Frustrating!


Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No. It was really me fighting to prove myself and they still couldn't put the test score with the very tall blonde in short skirts. I just don't fit in to their science sterotype or whatever so each class was a challenge to prove I was a serious top student while the guys slid through labs and were lazy.

I really extended myself to help other students and that was what my professor saw in me. I had a talent to teach the subjects I was learning to others and some appreciated that and saw that unique quality. I thank those professors. They saw that I was not competing for grades but that I learned science very naturally.




Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
YES and NO - I went in to technical marketing. It was really a great choice for me personally. I have business skills, a science background and a design background.

The problem is when I started I was "the pretty marketing girl" or "the artistic person." I had to constantly prove myself as someone who understood complex industrial electronic lines and how to market them business to business. I would meet with new sales people and sales reps who could not see past that I was a secretary. I also would be sexually harassed and put up with rude sexual remarks at trade shows.

I ended up going to work for my father-in-law's company where at least I could hide under his cloak for respect and do things my way. As time went on people realized my talent.

I then went into business for myself making a name in my industry with the trade juournals and publishers

Now my husband I have are on electronics manufacturing company. We employ 5 diferent types of engineers. I still handle technical marketing and have a hand in sales. However it is still a man's world and men prefer to buy from men and I cannot change that.

So YES my work environment did encourage me to make my own path and do it my way as a woman. I did not do it the way of my industry and the good old boys. I have my own part of the pie!
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes, from day one when I went to my first chemical manufacturing trade show on my first consulting job and the majority of attendees were calling me, "Honey". I knew that they were not looking at me at a chemical manufacturing represenative.
I was in tears - I was 24.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
They have changed for theh better. There are more opportunities and support. A woman is able to have a voice and network - although not in ones company still!
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Graduate school I always hung with the smartest in the class - men or women. Usually no women so my partners for labs and stuff were guys who actually appreciated and respected my time and work ethic. I really thank them - they were good friends to me.

What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Get a solid education from the best school you can get into and couple it with a business major or minor to protect yourself in the future - you may be the next hottest thing since Steve Jobs or you may need to break your own ground and market yourself. You can do that! You can set up your science knowledge base and sell yourself! Women scientist are needed and appreciated we offer a thinking skill set that is not taught in school curriculms.

In your studies be yourself, believe in yourself, when you get stuck keep going (we all have been stuck!)

When you go to get a job at anytime in life think of what you bring that is unique to this job or company and don't change that ever. Being a woman in a man's arena is tough but woman before you have walked this road and thanks to them our world is becoming a better place.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
NO - none at all. Not until I start working and even then I had to seek out woman mentors.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No, I think maybe they have more stress but I am unable to say if that affects the type of work that they do. There are such a small minority of women in my industry. For me personally I don't have children and I work big time hours and I think the men in some of my work groups take off just as much time as a woman would for family activities. It actually annoys me some time!
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have work with 3 of my partners for 7 years now. We work indirectly through our departments. I prefer to work with people I know because they respect my talents and do the work I ask for otherwise very few people are able to meet my level of expectations.

Individually!
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1996


Submitted February 10, 2003, 6:26 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was not encouraged nor discouraged.

Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I attended a science only college, so I did not need
any support to pursue a science career because I was
already pursuing it.
I did receive encouragment afterwards, to pursue
a PhD.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?

After my bachelor degree I decided to switch fields,
from basic physics to geophysics. I did so by enrolling
in an american university, where I was encouraged to
go for a Phd. I did it fairly fast up to when I had a
baby, this and an unsuccesful return to our home-country
caused me to slow down and eventually I finished with
my Phd after 5/6 years.
In all those years, even if I was one of a few women
students in Geophysics at the University I was
attending, I did not think much of being a "woman"
in science up to the moment I had to fill up a form
about my gender and ethnicity, where knowing the
low percentage representing women, I felt proud to add
a 1 to female-gender and a 1 to latina.
After getting my PHd Ifound a post-doc position and
a year ago a staff position in the same place.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I think the first time was in my post-doc/actual
position place. I am not sure if because it is not
Academia, but a national laboratory, with an
overwhelming majority of males, or because it lacks
the open-minded way of universities/colleges. It is
not obvious, and not so bad that depresses me, but
I think sometimes I am treated in a condescending
manner. I also notice that when opinions or ideas
in scietific topics are presented, sometimes mine
are not listen to or weighted as other's are
(the others are all males), like if I am invisible
in some sort of way. Eventually I am heard,
but it is not straightforward. It is weird that this
situation happens in groups not at individual level
when then I have a no problems.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?

I notice there are many, many young
women scientist coming fresh from college, well
prepared and with good postures. I belong to the
"in between group" so my seniors are 99% males, but
I hope the distribution will change if these group
does not perish. It will be so much nicer and
rewarding!
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
My earlier years were not in America. I attended
an all-girls school, may be that helped.
At college, we were 50% 50%, so again I did not need
to think or to ask for help for being a woman.
At graduate level, in America, I did it on my own,
the professors were males, but thet were friendly
enough so I did not think of reaching out for help
because of my gender.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Science does not have a gender. Even if demographics
show different. This depends on cultural fashions.
It is changing, may be when the time comes for you,
this topic of "women scientist" may not be neccesary.
Right now, at staff levels, there is a majority of
men. My personal experience that may not be yours
because, hopefully demographic is changing, is to
deal with the images people project about themselves
or how people percibe you, which determines to some
level the success of your career and your self-esteem
And this is what I learned:
Do not compare yourself with others, focus on you only.
In terms of gender, I think men tend to present
themselves and think on themselves as so smart and
so intelligent that you may think you cannot compite.
But if you go deeper, you will be surprised to learn
some of them are not as much as they think they are, it
is just a posture that they may have inhereted from
other times that women did not. Do not weight your
success by some of these standards, focus on what
you are doing and think why you wanted to do science in the
first place. Was it for adulation? Or was it because
it is fun and interesting? Bet for the later and you
will enjoy your choice.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
It is funny, because at the time I met them
(women in science) I did think them as role models.
It is now I realise some of them were
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
When people talk about "raising a family" I think
it varies from person to person. My "raising a
family" definition means, for instance to be with my
daugther and husband not 24 hs, but a good
12 hs. Implying I will not come to work nigths as
I used when I did not have her, or to work at home
after leaving work. Many scientist work 24 hs, they
live and think of science. In this later frame
the "family" issue is certainly a big problem. But
not for me, I do not think that not following a "100%"
dedication pattern means I am jeopardizing my career.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I would love to learn how to work as a team.
But for one reason or another I think I am
working individually almost 80% of my time.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1996


Submitted September 9, 2002, 1:28 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes! I was always good at math and science and wanted to go into engineering from the 6th grade. Encouragement mostly came in the form of a "lack of discouragement". Nobody ever told me I could not do it so I never questioned whether I should. My mother is a pharmacist and my father is an engineer so my family was very supportive of scientific pursuits. Additionally, I participated in an Olympics of the Mind competition in the 6th grade on a team of all girls building balsa wood bridges. We won the State competition and participated at the national level. It was definitely a positive environment!
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes. Most professors were supportive in the college of engineering. I tended to find more issues outside of my academic discipline - from the liberal arts camp when I talked about being in engineering. It was not very socially accepted. The social side of college was a whole different ballgame - it was a great struggle being a smart woman (2nd in my class) in engineering when it came to dating!
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After my BS in Electrical Engineering I was lucky enough to be awarded a Rhodes Scholarship. I worked for a large electronics company as an engineer before entering graduate school at Oxford to study for a Masters degree in Management. At that company I felt encouraged to use my technical abilities although less seemed expected of me. Projects that were projected to take 2 weeks could easily be completed in 2 days so I was constantly asking for more work. After completing Graduate school I returned to the US to work for a large telecommunications company in their Operations Leadership Development program. I quickly rotated through a variety of positions including project manager, people manager, and executive assistant. I then moved into my first "real" job as a senior manager in Manufacturing Engineering with approximately 50 people in my organization. I felt push back from a few of the individuals because I was very young and did not have a lot of experience. After a year with the group, which grew to over 70, I had proven myself and there were no questions I could do the job well. I was promoted to Director of Engineering and continued to take on new responsibilities. The only issue with pursuing my career was the balance with family - I guess we discuss that later...
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I feel that I had equal access to opportunities because I carefully screened the places I worked before joining. There were managers where I worked who would not have given me the same opportunities. One manager even told me that he was not promoting a women in his group because she was pregnant and it would not be in her best interest. I was lucky in that I worked for very progressive men and women and had very high level sponsors who made sure that my career was progressing.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I believe that opportunities are much greater now than they were even 10 years ago. I do not think I would have hit the glass ceiling in my industry because it is very progressive. This is very good for women who are willing to make sacrifices regarding their families. I do not know what my future will hold - remaining in academia, returning to industry or starting my own company so I can ensure my work/life balance. The increase in opportunities and confidence of women in engineering is definitely for the better!
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
No to important at any stage. I tended to require a strong network of male counterparts more than women.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it - the disciplines need women to encourage innovation and teamwork. Just make sure that you know in advance that there are people out there who will not encourage you so fully screen an organization before you join it. Also understand an organizations opportunities and policies regarding family leave if you want to stay home in the future.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I encountered very few women scientists / engineers during College nor did I attend classes on them or learn about them. That is one thing I am trying to change by returning to teach at the University after being relatively successful in Industry.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Absolutely!!! I quit my job as Director of Engineering after 2 years because I had two small children at home. My son had to have neurosurgery at 3 months old and I realized that he needed me more than work. I had loved my job but could not raise a family the way that I wanted to. I did not want to miss knowing my children when they still wanted to spend time with me. I was offered a part-time project management position but it was not they type of work I wanted. I wanted to remain a people manager (I was good at it) but part-time people management was not feasible in our industry. Therefore, I walked away completely for a while. Once my children start preschool I looked for part-time work and was very lucky to find a University trying to bring people from industry to infuse corporate professional practices into the curriculum. I now teach part-time and feel that I finally have the perfect balance between work and home.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work as a team. I believe that collaboration is far more beneficial that individuals working in silos. I am very conscious of balancing teams with diversity of backgrounds and thinking styles. That is critical in engineering if you want to encourage innovation.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1997


Submitted December 17, 2002, 2:20 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Hi I am Satya my parents encouraged me very much to go to Life science as it is a subject with lot of practical natured and lot of information and we will get to know about ourselves and many other things so by that we can teachor guide some others.


thank you for giving this opportunity for sharing my feelings
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)



Submitted November 14, 2002, 11:11 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No, but my parent were very supportive since they had both had some college experience. When I was accepted and attended Brooklyn Technical High School I felt empowered to be anything I wanted. I found that I wanted to be an engineer.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, one professor did help me get a part time job as a technologist with a small startup.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have had good and bad experiences but I have learned a lot along the way. I have been discouraged by micromanging and the inability to move foward on a project due to political issues. However since joining a design group I have been empowered and encouraged to learn and grow in an environment that is changing to meet the expectation of today business work. Basically my first job out of school was not encouraging and my second job is. This is sometimes the way things are.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I have work as hard if not hard on project worth up to a million dollars and due to my inability to toot my own horn I never received the rewards that a colleague who was male and less assertive work wise but more aggressive communication wise received. Many time I did not receive the help I needed to move forward on a project, just because I was more educated and a female. While I watched as my male counterpart was hand held through similar projects.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
My opportunies have stayed the same.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very important it gave me an attainable goal, which I needed.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Be prepare to walk a new path every day of your career. It may not always be easy but don't let anyone make you think you do not have what it takes to succeed in a career in the sciences or applied sciences.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes and no, I did not encounter many women in technology that I considered role models. In fact, I participated in a one week mentoring program as part of my undergraduate studies, where they were to introduce female students to women role models who were in there field of study. I was introducted to a young black male engineer, a woman who ran her own architectual firm but did not have a degree in engineering or technology and 3 women who worked in an engineering related department for a large firm (1 was an older female who had been an engineer but now managed people in another area outside of engineering and you had the feeling that she preferred that because engineering had been an unpleasant experience, and two other women who were part of human resources). Yet while in my graduate studies I found many more female role models. Yes, my college created one course about women in technology and I participated in it. We learned about ancient female doctors, astronomers, scientists, etc. It was an eye opening experience.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like working with a team but I have to work on leadership issues.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1995


Submitted August 19, 2002, 12:29 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, my father was a very strong proponent of engineering. Of course, he was an engineer, too. Both my brother and I were equally encouraged to pursue engineering. My father actively involved us in all sorts of activities including ham radio, radio controlled airplanes and other "geeky" math quizzes and questions. By the time I entered college, the only unknown was what discipline of engineering that I would pursue.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I attended UC Davis for two years and then UC Berkeley. There were a few females in the classroom - but we were all treated indifferently to be quite honest. Unless you made an overture to get guidance from a professor, you really did not receive much unsolicited advice. I attended only one engineering class from a young female professor. She was quite good, but unconventional. She looks like a hippie love child.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After college, I was employed for 13 years for an major oil company. I originally was involved in the design of upstream oil producing facilities and then became a manager of California upstream gas coordination activities. After the birth of my second child, I decided to leave and join my husband who had started up an engineering consulting firm. The firm has grown and I spend more time working on administrative and HR issues than technical work.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
After about five years of experience, I realized that I would need to become more vocal about my career if I wanted change. I networked with about 10 other female engineers and we compared notes about opportunities (or lack thereof). We knew which managers to avoid and which were open to change. Some women decided to leave; others have remained and excelled in their areas of expertise.

On the other hand, I believe that some of my managers have been overly supportive because I was a woman and had better soft skills than my counterparts.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Women networks saved my career, especially in those early years after college. I could manage in college without a female network, but networking is absolutely essentially once you enter the politics of the workplace. It allows you to voice your opinions, question authority and laugh at the absurd in the safety of other female co-workers. We also used this network to reach out to female role models and share experiences of balancing careers, marriage, families, divorce, the unfair boss, and other life changes. After 20 years in the workforce, I don't network much for my career, but I do network on personal issues with other female engineers.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Network!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I can't recall any female role models, other than the one female professor. I did not learn about the history of women in science or engineering in college.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, once I had children, I had to limit business travel.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I enjoy working as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1981


Submitted February 11, 2003, 2:04 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
yes and no. I was encouraged by my parents mostly (they
both have scientific advanced degrees). I was discouraged by several high school teachers and encouraged by some of my college professors. I do have the feeling that I wouldn't have studied physics if I hadn't been very stubborn.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
yes and no again. My advisor advised me to not take physics courses that I knew I would need for graduate school, but a few other faculty members encouraged me to continue.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After completing my bachelor's degree, I felt somewhat encouraged by my work environment in graduate school (or atleast not discouraged enough to quit). I attribute this mostly to having a thick skin and not letting things deter me from my goals.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No. There are very few women in physics so our existence was definitely noticed, which may not always be a positive thing.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I would say it has stayed about the same.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
none existent. I only recently have several close female friends who do what I do.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
be tenacious, without changing your personality too much.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
no - I found no female role models as an undergraduate or graduate student. There were only 3 women who could have served as role models (during my 10 year education), but I found it difficult to identify with any of them.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
No. The women I knew that had families worked harder than most but turned out quality research.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes - I enjoy working with others mostly. I am a theorist by training, which is very solitary, so I work with others whenever I get the chance!
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1997


Submitted September 10, 2002, 7:04 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
NO. I was encouraged by both of my parents to go to college. They stressed that they wanted me and my brother and sisters to have a better life than they did. My father never specified what I should pursue as a college career, however, my mother always spoke well of her elementary and high school teachers and encouraged my sisters and me to pursue a career in education.

Similarly, when I made it to high school, my guidance counselor, a woman in her late 50s or early 60s also encouraged me to get a degree in education and teach. That was the advice that she gave to all of her girls who did well in high school.

Frankly, coming from a very small town in South Carolina, and graduating in 1976, most adults were still in the mode of traditional roles for men and women, and were like minded about traditional career choices. I believe they didn't encourage me to be anything else other than a nurse or a teacher due to ignorance, not malice.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I began college as a liberal arts major with a focus on chemistry. Since I had already chosen science asa field of study, I did not receive any discouragement from any one.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Support for my work and career has been mixed. I worked for a large consumer products company right out of graduate school. They had a good program for young engineers and I was encouraged to pursue my career in engineering and with the company.
I moved on to work for a consulting firm. I was also encouraged to pursue my career in engineering, however, I also experienced my first negative work encounter - a personal attack and assault on me and my career by two co-workers who were jealous of what I was doing. It took a year for my management to figure things out, unfortunately by then the damage was done.

Since my second job, I have had some successes in my career, however, I have also faced many obstacles as well. I continue to encounter co-workers or supervisors with professional jealousies who are out to derail anyone that they perceive as a threat to them and will stop at nothing to get rid of or defame one's character.

I bring this up because a lot of time is spent, better yet wasted, on unproductive activity by selfish individuals that often produces empty results, takes away from the business and profits of the organization and the company, and no one gains in the long run.

Certainly, under these circumstances, the work place is not supportive. Unfortunately, in too many situations, management in the workplace is confused or afraid to act and just hopes the problem will go away.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
During my third job, I worked for a gas and electric utility in California. The engineering organization within the company had a reputation for not being supportive of women and people of color.

A manager who was very influential in the organization and was strongly against the organization promoting me to senior engineer made two very derogatory statements to his colleagues:
1) only individuals who have gone to Berkley or Stanford should be considered for promotion to senior engineer. By promoting someone to senior engineer, this says that the invidual has the potential to be a Vice President, and
2) even if they promoted me, no one would want to work for me because I was a woman and black.

Obviously, based on this thinking, the organization had never promoted a women of color and was afraid or worried to do so. In fact, none of the above statements were true, however, the organization was fearful of taking a chance and providing me with the support to allow me to be successful in the position.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Although I would not characterize it as a great change, I believe my opportunities as a woman engineer have changed for the better.
I believe my chances of success are better as an independent consultant than they are inside of an organization.
I am not willing to do many of the things that I have seen others do to get ahead. Being an independent releases me from a lot of the trauma of working with individuals who attempt to compromise your values for their personal gain.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very important. The meer fact that I received support from women in grammar and high school to go on to college was important, even if they did not encourage me to pursue science or engineering.
Second, when I was in college, and graduate school and in the work place, it was important to have other women to talk to who have been through what I was experiencing and who could share their experiences.
Often times, when the going gets rough, we think that we are the only ones who have been in this situation. It is good to know that you are not alone.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
1. There are more opportunities today to have a success career in science and engineering than at any time in history.
2. Women are still bucking the trend, but remember, we've really only been at this about 30 years. The men have a lot more time in than we do.
3. Things seem to be better for undergraduates and women who are just starting out in the work place. However, at the graduate school level some of the "women issues" still exists. That is because there are fewer women pursuing graduate degrees. Also, once you have about five years of work experience, the glass ceiling effect seems to set in - that's becuase the work place hasn't done much to include women into the organization beyond entry level.
4. There are still problems in the work place, but with the right attitude, most women and men can have fulfilling careers.
5. Women will have to send a message to management in the work place - use me or lose me.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
As a freshmen, I admired the women who were juniors and seniors. They had obviously overcome the obstacles of two or three years of college, and were doing well in their classes.

No classes on the history of women in science and engieering were available.

I did learn about the accomplishment of some women scientists and engineers through seminars where graduates were invited back to talk about their work and careers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
This seems to vary more with the individual, her organizational skills, a supportive spouse, and one's thoughts on their career future.

I have seen some women who truly seemed to be able to manage and juggle the work and responsibility with ease, and others almost cave-in to the pressure. Other women made a more conscience choice to spend more time with their children and family.

I do not have children and am not married, however, I have had some health problems that made me take notice of what is important in life. Working 70 to 80 hours a week, week after week is not something that I am interested in. I'll put in the time when it is needed, but I don't want to be wrung-out just because someone thinks I should work those hours.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes I have worked both with a colleague or limited amount of partners over a long time.
I actually prefer a mix of individual and team work. I can really be intense and focused when I amd doing individual work, however, working with teams allows others to inflect their view points, provide ideas and insights that I may not have considered.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2002


Submitted December 7, 2002, 6:04 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No there was no encoyragement or discouragement.I think all children should be encouraged to at elast explore this area.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I went to a 2 yr school specifically for HVAC engineering.The head of the program was one of our main professors and he was extremely supportive.the other HVAC professor was of the old school.He would make commebts when I was out about it being that time of the month(this was in 1982).My classmates(all male) relayed this informatiom to me later.In fact the first day of classes, this same prof asked if everyone was in the correct class as he looked at me specifically.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have worked at 3 companies since school.The first one was OK-I had a mentor there for the first 2 yrs then I was on my own.I was never given credit for my accomplishments.People outside that company commented how I probably would have been in a managerial position at a young age if I was male.I think I finally have some respect(after 20 yrs in the business),but that has come with time and proving myself over and over.I only partailly pusied my bachelor's in mechanical engineering.Never went on to finish due to family demands.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
It started in school with the one chauvinist prof.In construction in general,ther is an old boys network-a lot of drinking, golf, sports that women just are not invited to.And that hampers you by putting you out of the loop.Every week, there's an example.And I work at a great company now who support the women who work there
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Things are getting better.The younger men don't look at women the same way as their fathers did.I'm sure it has something to do with society in general and the fact that thier mothers worked.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
The only women network I have experineced is NAWIC.I have been a member for 3 years and it is wonderful.Just to be around a group of smart capable women is refreshing.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Be strong and don't stop.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, there were only 2 other females that had gone through the program and both had given up.Women scientists and engineers?What are they? Everything I learned of was on my own.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
YES
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like working individually so I can take the credit for my work.When in groups, especiually with men, they tend not to work cooperatively and they are happy to take all the credit.My feeling is I work way too hard to let soemone take the credit for it.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (no bachelor's degree)
1986


Submitted August 14, 2002, 10:03 AM

In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
When I started as an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering, I had a 15-month old son. My daughter was born a year later. Untenured professors have a long row to hoe, and are expected to put in 80+ hours per week. I soon found this to be impossible with a toddler and infant in tow, although I got no relief. I foolishly tried to forge ahead, returning to the University about 2 weeks after my daughter was born. Although I found it necessary to work fewer hours, I was not given an extension of my probationary period, because I did not take a formal leave of absense. My case is up for tenure this fall, and although my teaching and funding records are tops in the department, my publication record is a bit low - as I am repeatedly told by my peers and superiors. My case for tenure my fall on that point.

In hindsight, it would have been far better to take 4-6 months off, just playing with my kids, thereby allowing me to get both some much needed rest, and an extension of the probationary period.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Don't know / can't remember



Submitted February 19, 2003, 2:32 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. I come from a family of educators and engineers. In all aspects, whatever I decided to be interested in would be entirely supported by my family. When I became fascinated by physics and astronomy they found ways to encourage me and assist my desire to know more.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
As an undergraduate, yes. My professors would be available to assist any of us (almost any time of day). If I became discouraged I found that several of them were there to support me and help me find success again.

In grad school, absolutely not. It was a very competative atmosphere and I found that my questions were shunned with a "you should already know this" attitude. No matter what I did successfully, all but 2 professors would find something that was incorrect.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I am now a science educator. I teach high school courses in computer science and programming, mathematics, and physical science. I found that, once I acknowledged my enjoyment of teaching that I have been able to be successful. The school at which I currently teach was the first place I ever felt entirely encouraged to be successful since being an undergraduate. This, naturally, contributes to a sense of accomplishment and a feeling that I am "where I belong".
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
In graduate school I went to get assistance on a mathematical problem with Schrodenger's equation that I had encountered. A male student and friend of mine encouraged me to do so because the professor had made the problem crystal clear to him when asked. When I arrived and asked the question the professor became upset that I would ask such a "simple" question and was wasting his time.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes. Because I went into high school teaching I find that more places are open to bringing me in so that I can share their "workplace" with students and they feel they can influence public education.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Very. My primary support has always been my family. The only time I had a network of women was as an undergrad at a woman's college - and they were my fellow students. This was the only time I felt comfortable working with the "pure sciences". Otherwise, as a faculty member, my network is about 50/50 male/female for collegues.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Find someone who believes in you and hang on tight.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. All but 1 aid and 1 professor in my entire college career of physics were male. No classes were available on history or accomplishments of women scientists/engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes. I waited until after switching to a teaching career because I had the impression that to have children as a post-doc would severly hamper my chances for advancement.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Both.

Individually I work better when I already understand the material and am putting together lesson plans so that I can share the information with my students.

As a team when I am researching and discovering the how and why of a problem because I can share in so many different view points.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
1998


Submitted August 13, 2002, 11:09 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No, I was encouraged to become a nurse
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I recieved support and encouragement to go on to graduate school from my geology professors
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
The majority of my collegues were very suportive. I learned to recognize the ones that would be barriers and avoided them
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
When I started to lose my figure and was no longer mistaken for a grad student, It became apparent that a number of my collegues were less interested in me or my research.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, there are more women in the field and more opportunities
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I did not have access to networks of women scientist untill about 5 years after i became a professional
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, I had no women professors in my major field
Courses on womwn scientist were not offered
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I am single so family did not pose a problem. I don't think I could have done this if I had family responcibilities
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
both individually and as a team
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1984


Submitted November 21, 2002, 10:15 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. My father was a Civil Engineer. When I showed an
interest, he was only proud that I wanted to emulate
him. My mother wanted me to have a career, period. She
did not care wheather it was in sciences or otherwise
as long as I could be financially independent.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, I did. I am not sure if it was a positive influence,
but it made me take my schooling more seriously. When I
wanted to drop an Advance Math course the first year of
graduate school, I was scolded in the middle of a class
of 20 by this particular professor. That made me think
that he counted on me to succeed.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Probably my family was the largest source of encouragement
throughout my academic career. I was married, and my
husband remained my "cheering crowd" throughout my
education and later during my career in academia.
I consider myself lucky in that regard.

In my work place, I ended up working with some senior
people who used my time and energy to their benefit for
the first few years of my academic career as an assistant
professor. I simply could not shake the feeling of extended
graduate school and the timidness of a graduate student for
quite a while. By the time I learned the "rules" I had
wasted valuable time to advance in my career and I felt
burned out in many ways. I never saw this hapenning with
young male colleagues. They often start very independent
with demands and critisisms right away.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Well, I was mostly alone in my office. I saw my male
colleagues taking time off to go lunch which I never
got invited. I never developed that feeling of "belonging"
at my workplace. To this day my best friends remain the
women staff in the department (which I do not complain
really), but I would have liked to develop friendships
with my male colleagues at some point really. My relation
with them always remained cordial.



Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes I think it has changed. It is better for some situations
and not so in others. For instance, I think there are
more opportunities for women in research funding but
the "stigma" that it is less competitive therefore not
weigh as much academically is still there in the thoughts
of most male colleagues.

The administrators appear to be more active in tring to
recruit women faculty, but do little to retain them.
It is almost as if they want to satisfy the statistics
during their tenure but don't really care what might
happen there after.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
It has not influenced my career at all, mainly beacuse
I did not have an easy access to it, neither did I think
my issues were common to share. Perhaps I would have found
otherwise if I had tried to connect.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Most of the women I know who has advanced in their science
and engineering careers are those who have had strong
family support to start with. Butlack of such support
should, by no means, negate anyone's drive to succeed.
This is especially true in academia, because much of
the success and accomplishments are closely related to
self drive.

My best advice is to set clear goals and do not let set
backs influence you away from those goals; and always
strive to be able stand on two feet. Do more listening
than talking, and keep an honest and clear documentation
of your accomplishments.

Having family and children should never be considered
a set back. If you decide to have children, keep your
priorities in order...!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Not really. There were TAs who were women that could
have been considered as role models. It was rather my
drive to do well and please my parents the critical factor.
There were women peers whom I competed with in school, but
I was never curious about the accomplishments of women
scientists because I never really saw myself any different
than my male peers academically when I was a student.
That all changed when I hit the academic scene as a professor.
I could have used more live role models than...






In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, it did, but not because of the demands from my
department or my colleagues but rather beacuse of
demands I imposed on myself. I guess it all stemmed
from the fact that I wanted to please and measure up
all the time, and having children seemed not to fit
into the equation at the time.

I went back to work 2 weeks after I had my first child,
leaving him at day care from 8:00 in the morning till
5:30 in the afternoon! In fact, I was reviewing paper
abstracts in my hospital bed the day after I had my
son. I was helping a senior colleague meet his deadlines
in organization of a conference. This was the level of
committment I started out with , but I do not think I
got any "brownie" points for doing that.

Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes, I did. I do prefer to work alone now, or with people
outside my department. For some reason, I feel clearer in
thinking and less scrutinized when I work with people
outside my department.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1986


Submitted February 10, 2003, 5:26 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No. I actually fell into Computer science quite by accident.
Due to personal reasons I decided to finish my schooling
(which at the time I was in Nursing) at a local branch college.
The least noxious of all the associate programs offered
(just wanted a piece of paper proving I had been taking classes
all this time) was computers.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No. Never recieved much of anything in the way of support,
encourement or even decent advice from professors, advisors, etc.
Was at University of New Mexico in ABQ.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Other than being very excited with my classes in computers,
I was also very lucky to get into a local program called
"Women in Scince". This program was aimed at women who were
going back for an education long after HS, were changing careers
(such as myself), or were having a hardship (ie single mothers).
This program required a couple extra credits to help with
a huge range of topics from resume writing to how to deal with
sexual harasement in the work force. The program helped the
participants to gain employment at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
This was the ticket in! Once I gained work experience and
proved to be a valuable employee, I was hired on after my internship.
From there I continued and got my bachelors why the help of
my husband. Then I went on to get a Masters with the help of
my company/boss. My boss encouranged me a lot, gave me time to
work on classes, and my employeer has programs to pay for courses
and to even take time off (PAYED) to finish graduate degrees.
There are opportunities for more course work, conferences, etc
that can be taken advantage of as one wishes.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No. I have had nothing but support from all those around me.
If I wish to pursue another avenue (such as management) I have
the complete support from my boss/co-workers.
To make sure and date things, I received my Associates in
1988, Bachelors in 1990 and Masters in 1996.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think I have more opportunities because I have proved
my self capable. I also have found out about more opportunities.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I think the most important was a mentor/role model early
on in working in the field. That helped to set a high standard
for myself, what I can do and what I can accomplish. I did
for a while gain some enthusiasm from the Women in Science
organization (networked women in S&E) but have dropped out of
much participation due to work/family demands...so not too important.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
This would be my daughter right now who is 16 and heading that direction!
I am encouraging her in several ways. First, try as many different classes
as she can so she knows where her interests lie. Second, she sees me as a
good role model. She was growing up during most of my going to school so
taking classes is just a part of life. She also sees me as doing very well
in my job as a scientist. Third, having adults to talk to (myself and teachers)
to see what is out there and that it can be fun. She is going to attempt to
get a summer position at LANL this summer. I think gaining experience and even
more mentors/role models in the science fields will help her decide the direction
she wants to go. Who knows ... maybe she will decide to do something else but
her strengths are in the Math and Sciences so encouragement, encourangement, encourangement!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. No. No.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Absolutely! I had my 1st child before finishing my Associates.
I had two children and a husband. There was always issues with
family going on so work had to be flexible in both hours
and demand on my time. As kids got older (such as into school)
I was able to put more into my work...which helped my career
a lot.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
Yes. I like both. I prefer being left alone a lot
but do enjoy being part of a team and working together
for a common gaol.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1996


Submitted December 11, 2002, 2:30 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes!

My family was always very supportive of anything I was interested in. My father always said that if I didn't love my career, I would be miserable. They definitely did not believe in setting up barriers for their daughters!

I was also in a peer group where it was "cool" to be smart. We were the honors students, and almost all of my girlfriends went into careers in biology.

In high school we had an excellent life sciences programs, and two teachers in particular really influenced my choice of undergraduate major and, ultimately, career (thanks Mr. Landfear and Mr. Carlson!)
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Absolutely. I never felt like I was treated differently because I was a woman. My favorite undergraduate professor recommended that I go to graduate school at Humboldt State University, and that's the only place I applied. My graduate advisor recommended that I go on to get my PhD, but I have declined so far!
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I had one internship after completing my B.S., and everyone there was very encouraging. Then I went back to grad school after just one year, and I only finished my M.S. 4 months ago. But I have been greatly encouraged by my professors and colleagues at both Humboldt State University and College of the Redwoods.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I can't remember any time when I felt discriminated against or held back. My parents and my advisor were uncomfortable with me working alone, all night in the forest up near Pelican Bay State Prison, but I can't really blame them for that! Still, they were never discouraging. I wasn't allowed to bring a dog to the field site, but I had volunteers whenever possible and a large can of bear spray at all times!
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not for me, but I'm only 26 so my career hasn't spanned a huge amount of time.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I never was involved in one, or really knew that they were there.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Take lots of different classes, try lots of different things, talk to lots of different people, and find out what YOU LOVE. Pursue what you love and you'll always be happy. One of my best friends applied to Davis Vet School for 3 years before she was accepted, but now she's in her second year there and doing really well. People always tell me I look too young to be a professor (I'm 26), but I don't feel like I've moved at a crazy pace. I knew I loved bats from the time I was 16 and was lucky enough to have a family that supported me, and encouraged me to pursue any opportunity to learn about them. During graduate school I discovered that I didn't want to make a career of research, but it was a natural step to take my experience and get my foot in the door by interning at the local community college. Find out what you need to do to reach your goals and then don't let anyone discourage you!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I'd have to say "no" all around, with one exception. As a grad student at Humboldt I met a woman who taught mammalogy, zoology, and human anatomy. She's just the coolest, most intelligent woman I've ever met, and also the best teacher I've had at any time in my life, kindergarten through grad school. She does fascinating research and is also a mom!
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Absolutely. One of the reasons that teaching really appeals to me is that the work schedule is ideal for raising a family (I'm thinking several years ahead). I don't feel that this is a pressure put upon my by anyone else, I just personally feel that it's important for me to be there when my children are growing up.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have co-taught classes as well as taught alone, and I like both. I probably prefer to work alone now just because the logistics get a bit crazy, but I appreciate the input from my colleagues along the way.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2001


Submitted February 16, 2003, 9:14 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No. !950's/60's for elementary and high school. Active family discouragement - very negative. Active school and social DIScouragement with one exception: My 7th/8th grade science teacher who actively ENcouraged me by encouraging me to be the lab assistent, grade labs, etc.

Comment: The enforced isolation, therefore, I turned to a positive effect by ignoring all the negative comments (since they were almost universal) and concentrating on my studies. As a result I became a good student, although the lack of study partners was a detriment. I became a better theorist than experimentalist.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No, active DIScouragement. 1960's. Again with one exception. My freshman calculus professor who wished to put me in a special advanced program. (It was not possible, but he tried) All other professors were vocal in their disapproval, including the physics professors "well, maybe you can use it to teach your kids some math." At least they let me take the courses! And since this was almost universal it was easy to ignore.

Fellow students: active dislike "I won't have a girl for a lab partner"
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
After B.S in physics I went to work as a woman in astronomy.

1966 - Lick Observatory - work as a research assistent: no discrimation, active and full encouragement.

1970 - RPI grad student - active encouragement. Discrimination yes because I was a faculty wife and therefore unwelcome in classes as a serious student until I showed them my published journal articles, and they did a 180 change in attitude.

1974 - KPNO work as a research assistent in astronomy - active encouragement from everyone there.

1980 - US Navy civilian, meteorologist, oceanographer, programmer analayst. The LEAST discriminatory place I have ever worked and very encouraging. There were many women who mentored. There were many role models who were women and also role models who were men. FYI - the MOST discriminatory place I have worked has been the university.

1985 - Georgia State - mixed. Very supportive fellow students. Mixed faculty support. Some active DIScouragement. Some very active ENcouragement.

1989 - Los Alamos post-doc - mixed. not supportive.

1991 - NASA/Marshall - scientific programmer - mixed support, no ENcouragement

1994 - NASA Headquarters - senior scientist Office of Space Science - very supportive.

1997 - NSF - extragalactic astronomy and cosmology program officer - very supportive.

2000 - current employer - active discouragement

I became very interested in the history of women in science and technology and maintain a web site devoted to the 4,000 years of women in science and technology.

Women as well as men have contributed to all aspects of science and technology. The women with the same passion and dedication as the men. We were there at the beginning: men along side of the women.



Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No there was not. The social indoctrination my younger days was complete enough that a woman always accepted the blame for her failures and did not place it on gender issues.

I did not come to this realization until very, very late - about 1995 when the discrimination became obvious and easy to spot. I suspect that older women spot this easier than younger women do, although that is purely speculative.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
The change for me has been for the worse. Part of that I put to age discrimination, part to increased backlash. The younger women I feel have a better set of choices that we did 50 years ago. Part due to the -- sorry about this -- social reality that looks and age make a difference in everything we do.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
They were never important in mine. They did not exist for me. They are most helpful to have, they ease one's path, but are not necessary.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
(1) Ignore those who tell you not to do it.
(2) Do what YOU wish to do. It is your life and career.
(3) Take math. If you fear math then your teachers are not good ones. Math is easier than poetry. Math is aerobics for the brain just as a treadmill is exercise for the heart. One is as easy as the other. Physical practice and mental practice - they are both practice.
(4)Thinking is fun. Puzzle solving is fun.

The mystery of the universe is exciting.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Undergrad: 1960's. No scientists who were women, no mentors. I don't know what a 'woman scientist' is, any more than I know what a 'man scientist is'. A scientist who is a man or woman, yes I know what that is. I would like to see language change away from this unconscious discrimination.

In those days there were no courses in history of women in science, etc.

Grad - MS: 1970's. Active encouragement by faculty once I was accepted into grad school, excellent support in thesis work.
Grad - PhD: 1980's Active encouragement.

No professors in science, math who were women. I did know a few women in astronomy, and was privileged to work with them.

Astronomy is rare in that it includes more of the history and more of the actual people who did the work in the classes, undergrad and grad. Astronomy has had women active in research for a very, very long time. So it was easy to find historical role models.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I did not raise a family. I saw that raising a family usually is a detriment in the US. It is not a detriment in other countries to the extent it is in the US.

In the US the salary differential between a woman with and without family responsibilities still remains (NSF statistics). Many women succeed quite well. Many do not.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work with a small group, not individually. Except on a very few special projects that are done solely by me.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1989


Submitted August 8, 2002, 5:48 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No, I was not discouraged though. Science is my love. I began to go to school to be a Vetrinarian but felt as though I didn't fit in. I felt this way due to the fact I was one of three women and didn't grow up on or near a farm. I decided for a career in Education so I could foster science in all children.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, I had a professor who looked at my high school transcript and got me a small scholarship to be used to pursue a degree in science.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My new principal supports me in my science efforts in my school. She was a middle grades science teacher for many years before becoming a principal.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
yes, men seem to be promoted to admin positions faster than women. I also see this when dealing with the business world.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
My highschool science teacher was a big influence on my life. She showed me that because I am a woman I can do anything a man can do. She also showed me I can often do it better.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it!! Don't let others tell you that you can't do something. Stand tall and be the woman God made you to be. What a man can do you can do better.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
no, none of my sciece classes were taught by women. No, I didn't know a course as such exsisted. No, we never talked much about women scientists.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I decided on teaching when I became pregnant with my first child. It seemed to fit with family life better than a career that was 365 days a year.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked with my current grade group for three years. We are a tight neat team. i prefer to work as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school



Submitted March 6, 2003, 5:42 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No, I would not say I was encourage but I was not discourage either. I was told to work hard in school and to basically take the next steps (college). Determining what I would pursue was up to me since I am first generation college. Parents did not pursue higher educations.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
My physics professor always encourage students to try hard and never give up, even when I wanted to drop the course he told me to stick with it. He offered is personal time to help do tutoring sessions, etc....

Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I am still young just 2.5 years out of school. I feel there is a lack of support for my advancement. There is no support network of women here to encourage growth. I find that to be difficult. At times there is a little encouragement for me to get involve with the community, which I like to do .
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I do not necessarily feel I do not have access to the same things as my male counterparts , I just feel I am not listen too...
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think I am still adjusting in my career and still feeling out my working environment.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I had a female teacher for 8th grade chemistry science and 9th grade . I feel being expose to these women gave me a sense of understanding and the love I have for science now. Those are the only encounters or science teachers I have had over the years.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
To do research and stick with your passion regardless of the hurdles you face because your happinest in your career is all that matters.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I did not learn anything about women in engineering in my curriculm , I never had a woman professor for a science course in college except one class which was refreshing. Its seem women teachers always get the negative name of being mean.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
no family
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I perfer to work in a TEAM environment. I am team player.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)



Submitted February 14, 2003, 4:05 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes - from my father, who expected my sisters and myself to be interested in, and good at accomplishing, scientific inquiries. This mostly took the form of natural history as we interacted with the world around us, aware of biological systems at a myriad of levels. In school, I was never discouraged in math or science. My skills were well accepted by both teachers and fellow students. I think the fact that I went to very small schools helped in this regard. In grade school (Middlefield school district No. 2) we were the biggest class at 7 students. In high school, at the 'big' central school (Milford central scool), my class graduated 22 students. There isn't a lot of room for discouragement amongst the few, nor is there any emphasis on 'normality' since individuality is more obvious.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
yes - several of my professors expressed a desire to see me pursue graduate work and further career enhancement in the sciences
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I was encouraged in the area of research in my first few jobs, which were in research programs at a Cornell University.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I became aware of outside forces limiting my prospects when I first became aware of the gender prohibitons present at the time for entrance into various schools. Girls could not enter most Ivy league schools etc. I was particularly disheartened to learn that Cal Tech did not allow female undergraduates. However, as I sat and thought about the various implications of this, I was thinking that the trade off seemed to be that I would not be drafted and sent over to Vietnam to be shot on Hamburger Hill. At that point, I felt the trade was acceptable to me.....and I would pursue my career using alternative paths.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
They have gotten much better.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Networks of women scientists were very useful and important to me during graduate school. That was how I learned the ropes - expectations, applications, interactions.......
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it. Keep your eyes open. Some colleagues never advance beyond grade school in social skills. Some have social skills you need to learn. Try to have more than one project or direction ongoing, so there is always an alternative project/pathway/interest to turn to if you start hitting a brick wall.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
The closest to a role model that I thought of was a then - graduate student: Mimi Kohl. However, I never felt a need to find a female role model. I didn't see myself as different from the male professors. As Dad used to say 'only the plumbing is different'. The only concern I had regarding gender was my awareness that getting hired was difficult. I was particularly aware of difficulty for women engineers. This definately lead to my college study path into biology, since I had a strong desire to study engineering, but felt I didn't want to fight all my life trying to get a job. And, I was happy enough studying biology, so that was settled....
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
no
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer team work.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd



Submitted August 20, 2002, 5:05 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Not really. When I investigated applying to MIT for my
undergraduate degree, I was told by my school counselor
that she would prefer me to apply to a place that was
not so "masculine". Unfortunately, I listened to her.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, I ended up going to an all-women liberal arts
college and being the first graduate in physics. My
physics professor was most encouraging and supportive.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Only to the extent that I have pushed it. At my first
job interview after my B.S. I was told that although
they had advertised for a B.S. in physics, they were
looking for someone "more worldly". While working as
a research associate during graduate school I was not
allowed to participate in shallow water field research
because "the principle investigators wives might resent
women on the ship". Title 9 was passed that year, and
when faced with a law suit, the policy was changed.
Less than two weeks ago I was called a "pushy broad"
because I was advocating a co-operative effort between
my agency and a local university.

Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Probably the landmark day was when I read the inagural
issue of Ms. magazine in 1978.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Opportunities have changed for the better over my 30 year
career. I attribute this to the laws that have been
enacted. I'm not sure that attitudes have changed
very much.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Networks of women were not as useful to me early in
my career, first because I wasn't aware that there was
such a thing and second because there weren't very
many women around in my dicipline. They became much
more important to me when I went back to persue my
Ph.D. 15+ years later.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
1. In undergrad and graduate school, in your math
and science courses, study and do problem sets in a
mixed study group of successful men and women.

2. Never hesitate to take advantage of an opportunity
or challange that comes your way. It is likely that
you are at least as sufficiently prepared and
qualified for it as anyone else.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
The role models that I encountered were the nuns with
Ph.D.'s in the sciences that taught at the college. I
received what I consider to be a mixed message by this.
That is, a woman can go as far as she would like to in the
sciences, but the successful ones are single.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Absolutly. Expectation of a quality performance as a
full time employee and an involved parent is unrealistic
for women OR men. Families with young children should
be encouraged, not punished, for implementing flexible
life styles and schedules.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I need a mixture of both. Colleagues are necessary for
a fertile exchange of ideas and experiences. But work
alone is necessary for me to let ideas settle in and
ferment.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
99


Submitted August 20, 2002, 12:47 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
No. My parents felt that college was a place where women found husbands. I was encouraged to grow up to be a good wife and mother.



Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes. When I was in the engineering curriculum at college, I had a young child at home. My instructors were supportive if I had to bring my son to class or needed additional time due to parenting responsibilities.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Yes. My major was electrical engineering. After college I had a job as an industrial engineer for a few months. That experience rounded out the information I had learned in one class on industrial engineering in my undergraduate experience.

My second position was as a consulting engineer. As a result of that position I enhanced my experience in power distribution. I was in consulting for ten years.

Currently I am a facilities engineer in a university setting. My consulting experience has prepared me for this position.

As a result of being employed in an educational institution, I am encouraged to continue classwork or whatever training I would be interested in pursuing.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No. In an attempt to meet diversity criteria, I believe employers are more inclined to want to hire and retain female/minority persons.


Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes. When I received my Professional Engineer registration, it changed for the better.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I have maintained friendships with women engineers that I have worked with. These friendships provide personal as well as professional support.

I did not have the opportunity to network while in school.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
I am amazed at what has been achieved through science and engineering. Society in general takes a lot for granted.

I would encourage young women to take a close look at the world around us. Take things apart and see how they work. Get interested in puzzles. Don't be intimidated if you are the only female.

We have a lot of practical problems to solve: air quality, affordable power, clean water, different challenges in medicine. Look ahead to the future and be a part of the solution. Pursue a career because it interests you and have fun with it.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. Unfortunately.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes. When raising a family, one does not want to spend excessive hours at the office. Nor does one want to travel a lot. That did influence my opinion on different job opportunities.


Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
In my work experience I have worked as part of a team. I tend to focus on my discipline and coordinate with other disciplines.

I enjoy working with others and also having quiet time to complete tasks on my own.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
2001


Submitted January 16, 2003, 3:18 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, I was encouraged to pursue a career in the sciences. Both of my parents earned bachelor's degrees in chemistry. My father went on to earn a master's and PhD in cellular biology. Later, my father made a career in food science. To me, it was natural to pursue science because I understood what a career in science could look like. I also grew up on a farm. Being around the farm I think was an encouragement toward the sciences. I was also the smartest kid in a very small rural school. That gave me a level of confidence that I probably didn't deserve, but it carried me through some tough beginnings in college.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, my college professors in physics and math were encouraging. I had to work very hard in their classes because I was not well prepared and was not a natural genius. They took an interest in my success, and I found myself wanting to do well to please them.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I continued school and earned a PhD in physics. I am now an assistant professor of physics at a private liberal arts school. I have faced the highest level of frustration and disrimination in my job. I never felt so discouraged from this career in physics as I do now that I have a tenure-track job. I am hanging on for now but don't see myself doing this for the rest of my working life.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I feel unfairly treated by students and colleagues in my job. I finally reached a point where I cannot be twice as good as the guys, so I might not be good enough to earn tenure. The expectations for my performance are different than for my (all) male colleagues.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I believe I have many opportunties that I have yet to explore.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
When I could find these networks, they were invaluable. I think groups of women gathering to discuss their related careers and work is invaluable. I wish there was a national society of women physicists that opperated like the society in Sweden.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Don't underestimate the effect that the working environment can have on your overall happiness and satisfaction in your job.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I did not know any women scientists. I wish there had been a class offered on women in science. In graduate school I took such a class. Learning about feminism was an eye-opener. As an undergrad it did not bother me to not know about the plight of women in science because I felt accepted by my peers in physics classes.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I am still unmarried and have no children. I realize I may be too old to bear children by the time I find a stable relationship. I do not think I would find myself in this unhappy situation if I had chosen a different career. This is a regret that I have.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer working as a team. I enjoyed working in a small team in graduate school. I find my current work environment unsatisfying because I am in a department of 8 individuals whose main concern is only themselves. They do not work together.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1999


Submitted August 12, 2002, 12:27 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, I was encouraged to become whatever I wished. My parents are both scientists, so role models were not a problem.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes. I attended Penn State University where there was a strong cohort of women majoring in the geosciences. My professors never, to my knowledge, discouraged women.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I chose a grad school that I thought treated students well and allowed students to be unique. This allowed me to raise one infant and to have twins during my time in grad school, working around necessary family schedules and needs. After grad school I came to an institution and a department that allows faculty to pursue their career in a fashion that best fits them. I have been very lucky, but have also paid attention to the quality of life of grad students and faculty.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Having a support group has always been very important. This began in high school when I took advance math and science classes and continued through college and grad school. There are colleagues today whom I seek out for advice or just to listen, upon occasion.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
They need to realize that they can be successful by taking many career paths. That is, the more traditional path that is more common for males, may not be the right path for them. Keep an open mind and be true to what makes them comfortable.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
As an undergrad I did not encounter any women geoscience or science faculty. We did not study the history or accomplishments of women scientists or engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Absolutely! The choice of the type of educational institution at which I teach is very much related to the demands of raising my children. I have turned down opportunities for certain research projects because they did not fit my families needs. I have not participated in certain on-campus activities when they interfered with my family.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1986


Submitted August 30, 2002, 11:34 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
My father encouraged me to take the hardest classes I could in high school so I took college math and physics in my senior year of high school. I also took Spanish to prepare me for college. My high school guidance counselor encouraged me to take business classes so that I could work my way through college as a secretary. I was able to get an Air Force ROTC scholarship, so I didn't need to work while I was in college. I would have to say that I wasn't discouraged from going into computer science, but I made the decision all by myself from taking a computer class in high school. No one encouraged me to major in computer science, but no one discouraged me, either.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
My college professors didn't really encourage or discourage me. I didn't talk to them much because I was struggling in my studies and I didn't want to look like I couldn't cut it, so I didn't ask questions. I think that hurt me in the beginning, but I got braver as I was in college longer. I wish I could have had more support by having more of my female professors encourage me (even the male ones encouraging me). I think if I had had a support group to go to of women in computing, that would have helped a lot. I felt like I was thrown into the water without knowing how to swim and I was having a hard time treading water and there were no life boats around.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
When I started working for NASA, I was one of a few women in a group of men. I was used to that since I went to an engineering school where the men to women ratio was 4:1. Sometimes I was mistaken for a secretary. Sometimes I had men old enough to be my fathers trying to tell me who to date. I had to tell my boss to invite me to important meetings so that the contractors would know that I am in charge. After awhile things started changing and people started taking me seriously. It was a struggle in the beginning, but now I have no problems in advancing in my career. I am at a plateau where it is harder to get that next promotion, but my management wants me to stay in the organization instead of pursuing other opportunities. Hopefully this means they are willing to promote me to keep me here.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
When I was in college, I realized that the boys had more experience in computers than I did which gave me a disadvantage in getting good grades in my major. I needed a remedial computer science class. When I started at work, it was more my age and gender that hindered me than one or the other. Most people at NASA were over 50 and I was under 30. It was hard for them to think of me as their NASA monitor. As I got older and more proficient at my job, I gained more respect. I think if I was a male, I wouldn't have had as many men trying to be a father figure to me. I think they saw this young woman who couldn't take care of herself. They eventually realized that I could take care of myself and very well. After that, I didn't have very many problems. NASA tends to encourage women and minorities to move up more quickly since we are trying to become more diverse.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think I have gotten more respect as I have gotten older and have had more experience to show people. I am very well respected in what I do. I have been told that when I am on the case, the work gets done. When I am not involved, nothing happens, or it doesn't happen in the best way. I don't think that the people I work with think about the fact that I am a woman. I also don't put up with discrimination and I will fight if I find out discrimination is happening. I think that all the men that used to treat me like their daughter have retired and I am getting old enough that I am too old to be someone's daughter any more. More women are coming into the work place, so I don't stick out as much as I used to. I think things are changing for the better.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Networks of women scientists or engineers did not exist when I was in grammer school and high school. Since I wasn't an engineer, I didn't join the Society of Women Engineers which was the only organization I knew of in college. It wasn't until just recently that I decided to join the Association of Women in Computer (after 13 years of working at NASA). It was the first I had heard of it where I live. Since there weren't many women going to my university in undergraduate, I didn't join any groups in computing there. I didn't join any where I got my masters, but I didn't know of any and didn't have time if I did. I felt like I was on my own.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
I would tell them that they need to pick a major where they can get a good job and the money will be there for awhile. The biotech field is a hot one right now. All kinds of engineering are hot. I would also suggest that they get a mentor when they are in college and when the get into the work place. If they can find a female mentor, that would be great. MentorNet is a good place to find a mentor while they are in college. If their company has a mentoring program, they should volunteer to be part of it. As they get more into their career, they should turn around and mentor someone younger. I would also say that they shouldn't give up. We need people in these fields and many students are not majoring in them. We are going to be hurting if we can't get more women and minorities into these careers. It is not as hard as people have told them. I have been in computer science for over 13 years and I have had a ball.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
The only person I knew that had done any computing who was famous and a woman was Ada Lovelace and she was kind of a side note. I didn't take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering. That would have been nice. I didn't learn about the accomplishments of women in computing until I had been in the working world at least 4 years. I had learned about Madame Curie before then, but that was it. I didn't really have any role models while I was in college. I felt like a trail blazer.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I feel that I may not have risen up the ranks as quickly as I could have because I do not want to work more than 40 hours a week. I like to spend time with my family. It wasn't until one of my officemates became pregnant as well that she realized what it takes to be a mother. I don't regret my choice because I am not married to my work. I am married to my husband and am mother to my daughter. My daughter won't be little all the time and my husband needs support in raising her. He stays home all the time and I need to be there to help and give him a break. Because of that, I can't put the hours in and I look like I am not as dedicated at my job. Sometimes I think that the money I would get for a promotion is not as much per hour as it would be if I stayed where I was. I intend to advance after my daughter is in college which is another 10 years away.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work as an individual. I work with other people in my organization, but I wouldn't necessarily call us a team per se. We support each other, but we don't always work directly with each other all the time. It seems that we go in different directions and the teams I am on are not always made up of the same people all the time. I think my organization is made up of specialists that get pulled in on various assignments based on the expertise of the individual. I don't think we are really team based in the modern sense of the term.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1993


Submitted October 23, 2002, 11:13 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes I was encouraged by my 8th grade teacher to pursure a career in teaching, howerver I got the opportunity to pursure a career in technology by working in a computer lab at the university I attended by my head supervisor.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, My supervisor who was the director of Computer technology, encouraged me to so some thing in the center relating to learning how to operate the computer and use it as a learning tool. At that time there were several programmers that I assisted, and I would watch them and I learn many thing from watching them.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Yes, it did. I am currently in school working on my master\'s degree in Technology Applications. I am constantly looking for ways to improve myself, and learn all I can. I must stay current.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes. When I tried to apply for the various director, and coordinator position in my district, these position were visually seen as male positions. And males were hired.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, it has, howervere we have a way to go. Women scientist are still recognized in the technology area as having the knowledge skills as males. We are visioned as more clerical technicians.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
women scienctist during my grammer high school and my bachelors college yeras was limited. There were very few women scientist that I know of. However, since the late 90\'s I think we are more recognized now.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
To go for it. It is a promising field.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes, I worked under the super vision of a woman programmer. I learn about worme scientist by serching the internet
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes it does. I would love to travel and do traing, but with a family and teenager daughet it was difficult.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I perfer to work indivudually. I can get more done. I have a clear vision of what I am doing and how,what it takes to accomplish the given task.
What is your highest level of education attained?




Submitted August 20, 2002, 10:38 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I wasn't discouraged but I don't think I was encouraged. I absolutely loved math in high school and had a strong affinity for the physical sciences but I lacked a good guidance counselor (or personal drive) to help me in choosing a career path. I enrolled in college with the intent of pursuing a career in engineering (following my father's footsteps, mother is a nurse and I don't do blood) but had a nagging math desire. I was told I could pursue a career in teaching if I liked math - not for me.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No. I wasn't a stand-out student so I received no encouragement. I think if I decided to pursue a master's degree, I would have recieved support from the head of the mechanical engineering department.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have worked for defense contractors so I have spent a lot of time with the "old boys". Early in my career (~1990) I was often mistaken for a secretary and even made to sit with them. I have found that younger male colleagues with technical significant others accept me more than those who don't. Typically older male colleagues treat me well - maybe I seem to be a daughter to them. (That doesn't bother me.) As the years progress I feel better able to pursue my career as an engineer since more (younger) women are joining the field.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I'm not a guy, never will be. That is a major hinderance to my career. We go off to a meeting discussing something on the way. They all stop in the men's room and continue the discussion. I miss out.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think my opportunities have gotten better. As the years pass, women engineers are more common in the workplace and not treated as if they are odd.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Society of Women Engineers has helped me so much. If I didn't see other women at stages in their careers and family life, I don't think I would have stuck in engineering.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Consider what you really want out of life. Career, family, both. Talk to women who are doing it successfully and also struggling. Decide what you want to do. Be open to change. Have your family early or late not when you are 30.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. No. No. I never had a woman professor or teaching assistant. I took a history of engineering class while studying in Europe and what I got from it was the world's view of technology rather than the US view that begins relatively recently and neglects the accomplishments of those who aren't American.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
We are a dual career family. Before kids, I quit my job to follow my husband across the country. It took some time to find a new position. (I guess engineers don't follow their partners.) I felt as if I were starting a square one again. His career has thrived. Following children, I cut back on my hours - didn't want two parents working 50+ hour work weeks. I have missed opportunities (project lead) for my choices. I would never not have my kids but they have definitely hampered my career.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I like working on small teams.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1988


Submitted August 16, 2002, 2:55 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. Starting with a 5th grade math aptitude test
that showed I was at a 9th grade level, I was
encouraged to do well in math especially.

From grades 7-12, I was in a special math track,
called Unified Math. When my high school math
teacher asked me what I planned to major in
at college, I told him math. He encouraged me to
start with engineering. So, I went home and
looked up engineering in the World Book Encyclopedia!
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I started out majoring in Civil Engineering and
switched to Electrical because I enjoyed circuit
analysis and thought Electrical had more challenging
math components. I believe I got the same support
as the rest of the students, most of which were male.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
1981 - 1985 Semiconductor engineer for Motorola, Inc.
1985 - 1989 IT Manager for Johns Hopkins Hospital
1989 - 1997 Senior Systems Engineer (SE) for DEC
1997 - 2002 SE and Manager for Sun Microsystems, Inc.

I don't believe any of the work environments encouraged
me to pursue my full potential.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
College - did not have access to past exams that the
fraternities had collected over the years.

I do not have specific events, but do have a gut
feeling that I have always had to work harder and
smarter for the same opportunities as my male colleagues.

Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Some companies are better than others when it
comes to embracing diversity. Changes are for
the better, but much slower and smaller than I expected
to happen over time.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
High school - it was important to have a group of
friends that were female and good in math and science.

College - the Society of Women Engineers was very
important.

Career - the Society of Women Enginners has been somewhat
important.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
It's a great career with exciting challenges and
wonderful rewards. You can go far in these fields
with a solid education, good communications skills,
and a great attitude.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No. I did enjoy the networking within the student
organization of the Society of Women Engineers.

No classes or learning about the accomplishments of
women scientists/engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I have a very supportive and equal partner in my
husband. I have run into assumptions at work that women
might not want to do a particular job because of having
a family.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I've always been part of a team or managed a team.
I have a slight preference for working individually.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
1981


Submitted April 29, 2003, 3:26 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, as a girl I was encouraged to at least learn about science in school and required to in high school (I attended a magnet school for science and technology). I was, however, discouraged by several male adults from pursuing engineering in college (specifically being told that I couldn't "make" it through or that I would end up switching to business)
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I didn't really get much from college professors either way, although when I went back to ask for grad school references, one of them encouraged me to come work with him on my PhD.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
In the workplace I have been mainly without female colleagues and have often felt as though I was viewed as inferior or "a joke" by males (particularly when working in manufacturing test engineering, less so in software development). For the most part, though, over time you earn the respect or at least acceptance of your peers and managers. In returning to grad school, I have had a number of opportunities to meet women in CS and interact with many women role models.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I don't think there was ever an experience that made me feel that way. In fact, sometimes, I feel that I stand out more as a woman and people are at least willing to listen to me just to see if I know what I am talking about...
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think things have changed for the better over time. Mainly I think this is due to the progression over my career from manufacturing to development and then into a higher education program (PhD).
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I didn't know anything about networking until I went back to grad school, but in grad school, it has been tremendously important and valuable (in helping to get internships, funding, information, support)
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Find women who do what you think you are interested in. Don't get discouraged by people's unsupportive comments. Make sure you know in your heart that you are doing the right thing (I got sucked into something I didn't like and it took a long time to go back and do something different). Also, don't allow yourself to be too critical about yourself!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were VERY FEW women in engineering (EE/CPE) at my college, but there were a couple in CS. I wouldn't really consider them role models, though. I didn't take any classes on women's history at all, nor did I ever learn about specific accomplishments of women scientists or engineers. Things were definitely male-dominated at my school in engineering.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
N/A (yet!)
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer working alone on parts of larger, team projects or together with one or two others on smaller projects. I work better as a team member, but definitely need some amount of independence.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2003


Submitted August 29, 2002, 7:32 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was encouraged to pursue a career in engineering by my immediate family. My father was an (Electrical) Engineer. Although he didn't directly steer me to that particular profession, the example was powerful and I ended up pursuing electrical engineering as well. For me, it was a back-up plan for medical school - My question at the time was how do Biology Majors live comfortably? I knew Electrical Engineers did.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I received VERY strong support from my counselor at Michigan Technological University. He frequently reminded me of the fantastic advantages women in engineering experienced.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
The Ford Motor Company is a fantastic place to work for all engineers. Capable women are promoted into positions of power and influence. Ford offers many opportunities to ease work-life integration (flexible work arrangements, on-site child-care, etc., etc.) Ford is a great supporter of organizations which promote the career development of groups under-represented in the science & engineering professions including African Americans and women.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
I have heard comments and observed events which lead me to believe that the "old boy" network is alive and well. It is human nature for "like to be comfortable working with like". I have also observed that there are some women who feel threatened by other women and who purposefully inhibit the advancement of other women as a result. This is very unfortunate.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not so far, I think they've been consistent.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
These were critical. The Society of Women Engineers offered many opportunities for me to develop and exhibit my leadership.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
First, go for it! The comfortable life-stle afforded by engineering is wonderful. The flexibility to provide an enriching family life is nice.
Second, do become involved in societies/organizations which offer networking and leadership opportunities. You will learn lots about being successful in your career.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I was very active in the Society of Women Engineers which was a fantastic support system - full of incredible role models, mentors, and inspirational peers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
My interests are diverse. Before family (husband and children), I had little to divert my attention from career and society work. Now, I have a passion for my family and in providing an enriching home life. Work has now become an enabler for living a comfortable life when not at work, rather than the raison d'etre. I still focus on provide value at work, but my time is no longer unlimited for that effort.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work individually. I manage my time very well when necessary. Working full-time, completing an MBA full-time, caring for my husband and daughter while having another baby required expertise in time management. I accomplished it all successfully and happily for all.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
2001


Submitted January 16, 2003, 6:25 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was encouraged by my mother, who was at the time a high school biology teacher. She was born, raised, and college educated in Greece. After coming here (speaking no English) she obtained the graduate degrees which would allow her to be a teacher in the NYC public school system. She was my only source of encouragement to pursue a career in the sciences, until I attended Brooklyn Technical High School, where a science emphasis was (and still is) the rule.

During elementary and junior high school, there were no teachers who really emphasized science. One math teacher told me I'm just not good at math, rather than scrutinizing the situation more closely and realizing what was really hampering my performance at the time.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I enrolled in a Chemical Engineering program from the start. The attitude toward women at my university (which was mainly science and engineering) was peculiar.

On the one hand, girls were special because there were so few of us and it really looked good for the school. Academically the general attitude among the professors was one of happiness that we were there. There were of course numerous, subtle, and not-so-subtle exceptions, but generally it was positive.

Socially the story was different and there was very little sensitivity to the harassment that we had to deal with. A close friend of mine finally brought her complaint to the administration, who in my opinion were quite impotent in their response. Additionally, her professors could have done more to change the situation. They tolerated it in their classrooms rather than de-registering the offenders. At any other university this would never have gotten as far as it did.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I have been in graduate school ever since and am a couple of months away from completing my Ph.D. Most of my academic growth as a scientist has been during this time. I did intern with a company for several months, and that was definitely a positive experience. This company employs many hard-core women scientists.

My work environment, during the rest of the time, has consisted of my Ph. D. advisor and the state of our research group. If I were to describe his charge of me in one sentence, I would say that he was highly demanding, respected, and a giant in his field, but not in any way empowering; negative reinforcement was his specialty, and it definitely affected everyone in our group negatively. Fortunately his demands of us have turned us all into scientists with high standards and excellent performance, to his credit. His behavior has taught us a patience and tolerance for social situations understood by few, and that is most certainly not to his credit.

Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
In terms of a glass ceiling in the technical sense, no.

There was, however, an event that made me realize I would have to fight circumstances that my male colleagues would rarely if ever encounter. An industrial scientist visited our lab, and he behaved completely inappropriately. During an initially benign discussion on the Dow Corning breast implant lawsuit, he made a comment about my chest, right in front of my adviser. The latter did not address this issue with his colleague until much later, and only when he prompted. It was then that I realized that no one would defend me and that I had to defend myself, both pre-emptively and post-emptively, and learn how to guide converstations. I also had to be careful about picking my battles, lest I be labelled as a complainer.

The majority of my difficulties, therefore, stemmed from social issues, not academic ones.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
They have changed enormously, and for the better. The improvement comes more from my own adaptation and proactive efforts than from larger social changes.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Until joining SWE in college, I hadn't experienced any such thing. I think the abscence of such networks makes them equally important in my life.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Become absolutely fluent in as many types of math as possible.

Read everything you can get your hands on, and don't worry about not understanding everything initially. Even Nobel Laureates can explain only an infinitesimally small part of the universe.

Surround yourself with advocates. This is crucial.

Read "You Just Don't Understand" by Deborah Tannen, to gain some insight into the nontrivial issues in male-female communication.

And I know no one asked, but this is also important:
Do not get romantically involved with anyone with whom intellectual intimacy would be a question.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were zero female professors in the Chemical Engineering department, but there were some women teaching Chemistry, Biochemistry and Civil Engineering courses. At the time I did not consider them role models.

Sadly, we took no classes on the history of women in science. It would have helped to know about Dr. Stephanie Kwolek (the Kevlar Lady) and other modern-day amazing people.

We learned about women scientists on our own or at SWE conferences.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I can only hope for such a pleasant dilemma someday :)
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked successfully in both scenarios. I have found, however, that I need a fair amount of monasticism in order to function optimally, increase my knowledge base, and get the most out of indispensible group discussions. I think by now I've managed to find the proper balance.
What is your highest level of education attained?
abd



Submitted April 2, 2003, 4:24 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
My school were happy for me to pursue academic sciences (physics and chemistry) but when I put down technical drawing and auto maintenance as options I was forced to drop them in favour of Latin.
My family's initial reaction to my desire to be an engineer was disbelief, but once they'd got over the shock their main concern was that I didn't drop academic subjects in favour of technical ones. They were happy to support my decision to do an engineering degree so long as I went to a university, not to a technical college.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, the science teachers at my school were very encouraging. They made an effort to make science classes welcoming environments for the few female students who were there.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I worked as an engineer for a television manufacturer, then as a technical writer for a patent company and my current job is Internet Librarian, covering electronics and computer hardware.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Well, one obvious thing was that at work the men on my team went to the pub at lunchtime. I was never invited to go with them, but I was invited to go swimming with the (female) secretaries, so I tended to socialise with them more than with my direct colleagues.
I've worked in factories where there weren't women's toilets, and where the production staff didn't have changing rooms to change into their overalls. I've been sexually harrassed by a superior and also by colleagues.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think things are much better now. Back in the 1980s in the UK when I was sexually harrassed there was no realistic prospect of the guilty parties being disciplined for it, so I had to handle the situation myself. These days that sort of problem is taken much more seriously, so young women are in a much more acceptable environment at work.
Also I think younger men tend to think that it's perfectly normal that women want to do technical jobs, so the overall working enviroment has changed for the better.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I didn't have any female support networks within my profession, unfortunately, until I got my current job which is in a university library.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Be clear about what you want. And remember not to get sucked into giving up your personal life for your job. There's a lot of pressure to work long hours these days and it really isn't a good idea.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Not really. There were three women and 80 men on my course, and all my tutors were male.
All lessons were technical, there was no sociological background at all.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, I now do technical document processing, rather than real engineering, so that I can work from home and be with my children more of the time.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer team work, although I've done both.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1984


Submitted August 12, 2002, 12:20 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I was neither encouraged nor discouraged. Family was somewhat surprised when I actually decided in college to major in science at a liberal arts college.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I was strongly encouraged by professors to pursue my interest in geology. I received support primarily in the form of encouragement; however, one professor did assist me in getting a small scholarship to finance summer geology field camp.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My work experience in science has been, for the most part, very frustrating. In the "science" consulting world, science is downplayed as much as possible--facts are not welcome unless they are favorable to the client's position. Management skills are emphasized much more so as the "way to get ahead" than are technical skills or experience. Even in my relatively progressive company, men hold all the most senior and best paid positions. Very few women stay in the field long enough to reach such positions because of family responsibilities or disillusionment over lack of advancement--they leave and start new careers.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes. I have on several occasions been excluded from field jobs where "it would be too dangerous for women" in a "rough" part of town, or "women aren't strong enough to lift this piece of equipment needed." On a number of occasions, I have seen men with less experience than myself but the same training be promoted to higher positions because "the client likes them." Assertiveness coming from women is still perceived as insubordination; from men, it is viewed as positive ambition and desire to advance.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
My opportunities remain open if I'm willing to accept non-glamorous low-level field/travel assignments that no one else wants. My opportunities for advancing into management are meager and shrinking as those with more experience than I and in need of their large salaries stay on at the company for many years.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Women's networks? What networks? The few mentors I've had in college, grad school, and work have all been men. The majority of women drop out of their professional careers to raise families or pursue other careers, and the beginnings of a network dissolves. I've tried to mentor younger women, but for the most part they're not interested, not realizing how important mentors are.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
You must be prepared to put up with typically subtle sexism with a smile and daily prove you're as good or better than your male counterpart. Most of your co-workers, or at least your bosses, will be male. If you object loudly to your unfair treatment, you will be perceived as a trouble-maker, disliked, and passed over more than if you maintain a good humor and "thick skin." If you really want to practice science, you must be persistent enough to put up with this.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I saw several intelligent, well-educated women who had put their academic careers on hold to raise their families. I also saw that their husbands did not put their careers on hold when children arrived.
I did not take courses in the history of women in science. However, I did attend a women's college, so women's accomplishements were on display and frequently discussed.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I see that raising a family has dramatic effect on the type (and quality) of work women do. When a woman in the office has her first child, less than 50% of the time does she return to her previous position after maternity leave. More often than not she quits her career, at least for a few years, and devotes herself full-time to caring for the child. Only those few women with older children or with a high income (to support day care or a nanny) continue with their careers. For single or low-wage mothers, there is a constant conflict between work and child care; there is frequent sick time taken to care for sick children, which affects job performance. When men in the office have their first child, there is little to no apparent change in their job, regardless of their income.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have worked primarily for consulting companies where I work in interdisciplinary teams that change as the project needs change. I prefer to work in small teams and/or individually, as large teams are plagued with egos and power struggles.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1990


Submitted September 19, 2002, 6:23 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, I was encouraged to take Algebra as a summer class after 7th grade.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I received the same support from college professors.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I was strongly encouraged at the first place that I worked for. Since I have become a mom I have experienced more bias because I am not working 50-60 hours a week like I used to.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes as a matter of fact, last month. I was interviewing for a position at another company with 3 people. One of the guys asked me questions like, what does my husband do, how many kids do I have, how many hours a week do I work, would I be willing to work out of state for a period of time. He made it quite obvious that being a mom was a big strike against me.
Later I talked to another one of the interviewers. He apologized for the other guys behavior and said that he was a couple years away from retirement. We both described him as being "old school". Unfortunately the first guy does play a role in whether I get hired and what I would be doing.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
The opportunities have changed the way for the better. There has usually been a women that has paved the way ahead of me.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I didn't have any networks of women until after I graduated from college and that wasn't important. At my first job I had a woman role model. I admired her and I could ask her questions about the company and it wouldn't get back to my boss because she worked in another office.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
You can do anything that you want just like a man can.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I did not meet any woman scientists or engineers. There were no classes offered on the history of women. I did not learn about the accomplishments of women.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
The demand of raising a family when both parents work affects the job. We don't make the same sacrifices for work especially when it comes to how much time we work. It is worse for women because we are expected and I want to stay home with the kids when they are sick or have doctors appointments.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I usually do the work or manage the work on my projects.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1991


Submitted February 10, 2003, 1:04 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, once I was in high school. My math and science teachers encouraged me to compete on academic teams (quiz bowl, math team, junior engineering and technical society team, etc.). My physics teacher especially encouraged me, telling me that he thought I'd be a good physics major. That was really the first time I consciously thought about going into science, and it was some time in my junior year. My parents also supported me in whatever my interests were - building parade floats and theatrical sets, competing in quiz bowl and math contests, studying Shakespeare, taking over a room for my photo darkroom, editing the year book, teaching myself typing and German in the summer, etc. They didn't make me feel as if any of my interests were inappropriate for girls.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Not particularly; at a large university, professors didn't seem to want to get personally involved with their undergraduate students too much. My "match" with an advisor was particularly unfortunate - he was a nice old man, but he didn't push me to explore certain areas (like computer programming and electronics) that I much later found out I really enjoyed. I think of this as a missed opportunity for me to have learned that earlier, but as it has turned out, I'm happy with where I am now, so the outcome has been good. And I have now taught both electronics and computer programming in some form to undergraduates myself!
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I went to grad school in physics immediately after my B.S. degree. I did pretty well in my classes (As and Bs), got married after the first year, and immediately became pregnant. People in the department reacted in various ways, but thanks to the leadership of the one woman in the department, who basically said, "So what? She can still keep on working even with a baby," I was able to stay in the program, complete my coursework (with occasional baby-watching help from lab-mates while I attended my last class or two), and eventually complete my Ph.D. So, while my environment didn't necessarily "fully encourage" my pursuit, key people (the professor and my fellow students) did fully encourage and support my pursuit of my career, and my husband did, too, by working nights in order to be home with our child most of the day. My child, too, has supported my career, by learning to be flexible and independent and accepting of the idea that everyone deserves time and space to do the many different things that are important to them.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Sometimes I have felt more pressured by responsibilities to my family than some of my male peers seem to be. In a sense, then, the opportunity I to which I think I have less access is the freedom to travel for business more, to shut out distractions, to align priorities in a certain way. But I think that I choose to respond in the way I do because of my priorities. I don't think I have missed opportunities because of someone else's perception of my gender role.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, they've changed as I've moved up in my career. I had lots of uninterrupted time for science as a grad student, much less as a new professor, and even less now that I have more administrative responsibility with committees during the year and various summer programs I direct each summer.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I've never found networks to be important to me; I have, however, relied on strong friendships with people at each stage, and some of those friends are women in science, medicine, etc.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Find something you love doing; there's no point in spending your life on something you don't enjoy. Work hard; building any career, from full-time mom to university researcher, will be difficult at times. Never let anyone tell you that you shouldn't be in science - guys who get Cs (or worse!) sometimes go on to grad school in science and even end up contributing useful things. Remember that you're never trapped unless you let yourself be; if something isn't right for you, don't keep at it just because you feel you should.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes, I encountered some role models - grad students who graded for courses when I was an undergrad, and one faculty member in the department when I was a grad student. I did not take any courses on women in science and engineering, but I did learn through reading here and there about women's accomplishments in astronomy (my field).
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes - see above. I have made choices to skip conferences, decline observing opportunities, and spend less time on research in order to be present in my child's life. I haven't forgone any of these opportunities entirely, but I have decreased the frequency with which I'd participate in them if I weren't spending time being a Mom.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
In grad school I was in a group of about 7 - 10 people, but my work was mostly individual (except during observing runs, when we all worked together). I think I prefer to work individually, but I enjoy talking frequently with others doing similar work (both in my research and in my teaching) about how we do things and what we find works for each of us.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd



Submitted August 28, 2002, 8:34 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes. Both my parents and my high school encouraged me to pursue a degree in the sciences. I was a very good science and math student and at a small Upper Michigan school, was given the opportunity to be the first student to take calculus as I had a brother taking engineering in college and we used the freshman calculus book from that school. My chemistry teacher was very supportive and was not concerned about the fact that I was a girl. (He was probably in his 60's at the time.)
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I attended a college that was primarily engineering, so this was a given, if you were a student there at that time.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My first work experience out of college was as the first woman in the industrial engineering department of a major auto manufacturer and NO I was not fully encouraged to pursue my career. In fact, I had more than one experince with men who told me outright that I had no business taking a man's job. It was extremely hostile from some people.

There were also some people who were very encouraging. These were mostly "younger" college grads.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
One hugh event took place several years after I started. I had been transferred to the LA area. I had been there about a year, when they hired a guy that didn't have any engineering background. After about 6 months he was promoted and given a raise so that he was being paid more and had a higher level even though I had been with the company for about 3 and 1/2 years.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes. Women are accepted much more easily now than they were 30 years ago. It was extremely tough then. It is still no picnic, but I think that most people have worked with enough women that they realize that like everyone else there are women who do a great job in their field and ones that don't. It is not dependent upon being or not being a woman.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Only in college was this great. There were a lot of women (1 in 8) students that were studying to be engineers.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Stick with it!! The rewards are worth the work.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Thirty years ago there were very few women instructors. No there were no classes on the history of women in engineering.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
yes
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work individually.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
1979


Submitted March 11, 2003, 5:52 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, encouraged by my parents. Father is a mechanical engineer.

Also attended a 3-week summer program at the University of Toledo (Toledo, Ohio) in 1991, the summer between my junior and senior year in high school. That introduced me to engineering versus traditional chemistry.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
I obviously recieved support since I was working toward my degrees in Chemical Engineering (B.S. and M.S.)
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
My career has been positive.
I work in fiber optics, a relatively new field. Because the companies are new, there are few problems for female engineers.
I have only run into a very few males with poor images of female engineers; they seem to be the exception rather than the rule in this up-and-coming technology.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
My career has not yet been hampered because I am a woman. Both of my companies had a relatively high percentage of female engineers and technicians.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I have not been in the profession long enough to answer (5 years).
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Not a big influence in college or high school. That is probably because my parents encouraged me to do whatever I wanted - with their support I didn't need outsiders as much.

Networks seem to be more important now that I am working and thinking about having a family.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Go for it!
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
At both schools I attended (B.S. and M.S.), there were female professors in Chemical Engineering. Also, while I was working on my M.S., there was a woman in my research group who, after staying home and raising 3 kids, went back to school to get her PhD in Chem E. That took me by suprise.

None of my classes (either in general education or in engineering) covered accomplishments by female engineers.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes, it does. And I don't even have kids yet!!!
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I have only been in the workforce for 5 years. For each of the 2 companies I worked for, I worked with the same people for the entire time (1.5 years and 2.5 years respectively).

I prefer about 60% individual work and 40% team work.
What is your highest level of education attained?
ms_ma
1998


Submitted August 9, 2002, 1:55 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
I wanted to be a veterinarian and was encouraged by my family. However when I asked our "family veterinarian" about pursuing a career in the field he pretty much told me to forget it. It was too hard and I would never make it. I think I was about 12 at the time. That discouraged me so much that I did not go back to pursuing my dream until after my first year of college.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Definitely yes. I was an Animal Science major at UC Davis and many women in that field went on to pursue research and medical fields.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I went from undergraduate to a job at a veterinary clinic while trying to get into grad school. Everyone around me was behind me. I started veterinary school, which has classically been an "old boys" school in a class of 70% women. Needless to say- we had things fine. Out in the working world, there are many older men that don't support women- I don't associate with them and they are retiring left and right.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
no. I think having a majority of women graduating from veterinary school these days has kept us on the leading edge of our profession.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
no, not for me
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Important, but did not make my decisions any different.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
To follow their dream and do what they do best as they can become anything they can dream of.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No, no and no
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Yes- it does. There are times that I need to take time off from work to meet the needs of my family- so I do spend less time reading and following up on my cases, but not to the detriment of my patients.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to be able to make my own decisions, but to have the ability to work as a team on difficult cases.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1990


Submitted August 20, 2002, 5:31 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
In elementary school, I heard "girls aren't good at math" which really confused me because I was good at math and really liked it. My mom said that it was nonsense because she was good at math too. She always told me that I could be good at whatever I wanted to do.

My dad is a mechanical engineer and a person who answers "how was your day?" in great detail. So, I grew up hearing all about engineering things (and started to understand it after a while).

Other than that, I wasn't particularily encouraged or discouraged about science until junior year of high school. Then, a teacher asked me "What are you going to study in college? Computer what? You're doing something with computers, of course." That was the first that I gave thought to studying computer science.

This same teacher also gave me many opportunities to learn computer science material that wasn't offered in the high school's courses.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
No. I only had one female professor in my science classes. She didn't make an effort to talk with her (two or three) female students. The guys had a nasty nickname for her which made me want to keep my distance from her.

One male professor would answer questions asked by females verry sloowly and those asked by males quickly.

My graduating year, there was only one other female with a math/computer science degree.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
All of my jobs fully encouraged me except one with a government contractor. Even though my work was above reproach, I encountered obstacle after obstacle while working there. After a while, I left.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
At the job mentioned above, I sent an email to a superior about a trouble and a proposed solution that I needed his assistance with. The response from him was essentially "there, there, now don't you worry" with a pat on the head. A male co-worker copied and pasted my email into a message from him and sent it to this superior. The superior's response then was "oh, no! We have this terrible problem! Everyone must take care of it right now!"

At the end of 1.5 years of long and hard work, the credit and praise for my team's work went to two men.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Not really, but I have seen an effort in the information security field to get more women involved and trained.

How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
They were very important towards the end of college. When you sit in classes with only, maybe, one other female day after day, you start to wonder if you're not feminine or crazy to have chosen a science field. I joined SWE then and was so happy after the first meeting. Here was a whole room full of nice, perfectly normal females who were all pursuing science or engineering degrees as well. It gave me peace of mind.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
If someone tells you that girls aren't good at math, don't listen.
Females can be good at what ever they want to do.
My science career has provided independence which I value highly.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No.
No, none was offered.
just Judith Resnick because of the shuttle disaster
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I don't have a family but can see how it affects both males and females. You need to leave on time and have a harder time traveling. Vacation days go to school events, kid sick days, etc.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
The longest period of time that I've worked with someone is three years.
I like a mix of working individually and as a team.
What is your highest level of education attained?
College (bachelor's degree)
1992


Submitted December 3, 2002, 2:31 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
My parents consistently encouraged my brother and me to do whatever we wished with our lives. As it turned out, I went the academic route to a PhD in engineering and my brother never attended college at all.
My parents also passed on their belief that a woman's opinions are less important than a man's, whatever the question. When it came down to particulars, their opinions on what was/was not appropriate for me to do pushed aside their high-sounding philosophy. For example, they would not allow me to enter a calf scramble at the county fair in high school, where 20 boys try to catch 10 400-lb calves running loose in a pen. My parents did let me enter the less physically demanding pig scramble, still with misgivings (the pigs weighed 40-50 lb), that was the girl's equivalent. (I didn't catch a pig.) I remember my mother telling me that girls tend to do more poorly in math than boys, and better in language and grammar. It was obvious to me that, in our family, the man was in the controlling position. The woman was supposed to come in second to him, and the children even farther back.
When I decided to attend an engineering school after high school, though, they supported me financially and emotionally as well as they were able.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
The only negative feedback I can recall was when my PhD thesis advisor would tease me about voting for the more attractive US presidential candidate in an upcoming election. Otherwise, my professors (this was at a fairly narrowly focused engineering school) seemed uniformly to treat me as just another student. That was both positive and negative, depending on the professor and his/her approach to learning.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
See the answer to question #3 for part of the discussion of graduate study. Looking back, I think my PhD advisor didn't quite know how to deal with me, so he left me pretty much to my own devices (while providing excellent financial & technical support) until I had my thesis mostly written, at which point he suddenly wanted to micro-manage it (my viewpoint). We butted heads, and though I finished, ultimately the thesis was the poorer for it.

Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
My advancement has been hampered more by my own internal constraints, many derived from self-gender discrimination, than any apparent obstacles set up by others. My first realization of this came when I noticed that, whatever the makeup of my grade school through high school classes, I always "magically" placed near, but never at, the top of the class. I always (subconsciously) made sure that I never did quite as well as the smartest boy in the class. Pretty skillful, when you think about it. And I did it all to myself!
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
My engineering field is small, and under attack from the public and university administrations for diverse reasons. I feel much more discrimination on that basis than on the gender issue.
Besides, I'd much rather be discriminated _for_ as an engineer/scientist of exceptional ability, than as a woman. My gender is incidental to my abilities, and that's how I live my working life.
To answer the question more directly, I haven't seen the opportunities change because I haven't paid that much attention.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Not important at any stage. During the last five years, I've tried to attend meetings of a Women in Science and Engineering group formed by the women faculty and staff at the university that I will shortly be leaving, but I'm not the group type and I haven't gotten as much good from it as I could have.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Think about what makes you feel good (in a deeper sense than, say, sex!) and work out how to do it for a career. It doesn't matter whether it is science, engineering, or any other area. Don't blindly believe what other people think you should do -- listen to them, but also understand all the other reasons for what they say. In other words, where are they "coming from"? I personally find a career in science/engineering able to satisfy my curiosity about how things really, truly, down-deep, work. That might not be for you.
Once you understand what you really want -- and only you can decide that -- then just go about it. My approach always has been to ignore or work around silly obstructions when I can, tease back when I can, and out-maneuever the bastards when I have to (I do this too rarely). Develop a skill for constructive confrontation -- don't listen to those insidious voices that tell you to be nice or ladylike -- if it's worth doing, it's worth fighting for.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
There were few women role models during my undergraduate years. One acted such a buffoon that she was the butt of jokes, yet I learned from her how far was too far to push the envelope.
During graduate school I became aware of a few more women in my field (even now I know of less than 10 women PhD-holders in my field in the US). By that time, however, I had become fossilized in the don't-talk-so-they-won't-know-how-stupid-you-are mode, so I have never gotten to know any of them at all well.
I have never taken any classes on women in science and engineering. I am quite uncomfortable with formal courses in "women's studies". Fairness is not a time-weighted average. It would be much better to incorporate all extraordinary scientists and engineers, whatever their gender, race, etc., into history of science courses without the "separate but equal" hypocrisy. I've learned the accomplishments of women scientists and engineers from biographies (print and film) that I read/watch for my own enjoyment.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Not that I've noticed, in colleagues with children. I have none of my own, by choice that I have yet to regret.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I've always been a loner. Despite numerous attempts I've never been able to work well as part of a team. It's one of my greatest obstacles, since I also don't have the skills or expertise to accomplish everything needed for my research. I've accepted a new position that should provide a collegial, capable group to work with. I'm looking forward to that with eagerness and trepidation mixed.
What is your highest level of education attained?
phd
1988


Submitted August 13, 2002, 1:17 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Well, I wasn't DISCOURAGED. I was expected to do well in math and pursue some profession by my parents. When I chose geology as a college sophomore, my father was thrilled and immediately arranged for me to spend a day with faculty of the geology department at his university over my winter break. My parents gave me my first hammer that Christmas.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Absolutely. I was a double major in math and geology, and my math advisor was ecstatic that I had found a potential career involving application of math - he felt that career opportunities in pure mathematics were limited. My geology faculty were marvelously encouraging and steered me into a grad school I might not have considered, not being aware that a school of oceanography could be a place to do geology.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
I spent 5 years in grad school, and a sixth writing my dissertation in a different city, where my partner had started a Ph.D program. I then did a 2-year post-doc, combined with some part-time teaching, before being appointed to a tenure-track position at a college of art. I received tenure without trouble and have taught my field, coordinated all science offerings, spent a term chairing my department (all of the liberal arts and sciences), and chairing the Faculty Senate. I have found a very supportive work environment, but one, ironically, without colleagues in my field. This has been limiting.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
There was a professor in my field with whom I should have studied. He was well-known to have discriminated against women in the class ahead of mine, to their great detriment, so I simply decided not to take his classes. I requested permission to audit, which he denied. I am sorry to have missed the course content, but feel it was the right decision.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
I think there are more professional opportunities and more respect for research in geoscience education than there used to be, and that has been a productive avenue for me, especially when babies or administrative duties interfered with traditional research activities.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I was the only woman in a class of 13 geology majors in my year of college. There were two of us in my grad school class of six. But in grad school especially a network of woman students got me through some tough times. We called ourselves the Old Girls' Club and met monthly for dinner. Some of these women are still the people I network with for career advice and comparing notes on advancement, service, research and promotion. It has been very important.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
There are some really unusual and unpredictable career opportunities out there for trained scientists (like teaching in an art school). Keep your eyes and mind open for them, because they can be more fun than the traditional tracks.

Get out there and chat with colleagues.

Always be friends with the office staff.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
I had no women science faculty as an undergrad, and only two, outside my area, in grad school. There were no classes in women's history in science and engineering. Some of my grad school's alumnae were well-known for their scientific contributions, and they were my role models -- until they returned to the institution and could not possibly live up to heroic expectations!
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Oh yes. I know very few women with small children especially, who can spend 2-3 months in the field. I do know one who has managed it, but she's remarkable. The rest of us figure out how to do more with fewer field data, and it takes a toll. Children are more compatible with the teaching part of my career -- the academic schedule is a boon to mother-professors. But I have less chance to participate in the extracurricular activities of my school because of my children.

Even without children, being partnered makes a difference. I turned down one fairly prestigious post-doc because it wasn't where my partner needed to be -- and I was not the only woman to turn down that post-doc that year for that reason.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I prefer to work with one to three colleagues over a long time.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1986


Submitted August 13, 2002, 2:37 PM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.
Yes, in general. I was encouraged by both of my
parents to go to college, which was unusual for
our working-class town (but my parents were pretty
unusual among their peers.) I was praised for my
math skills by my parents and my math teacher,
and my mother was the one who suggested I become
an engineer. She didn't know what it was but she
knew it took math skills, also, she had seen two
of her brothers move out of the blue collar world
through good jobs in engineering. My mom started
encouraging me to think of engineering when I was
a junior in high school; before that, it was just
general encouragement to go to college and get a
good job that wasn't blue collar work.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Sometimes yes, sometimes no. A workstudy job in
an engineering department allowed me to get to know
several professors and the department head pretty
well. They really encouraged me. However, the
department head publicly expressed disappointment in
me when I got engaged, saying he had thought I would
amount to something but now I was like all the other
girls. In grad school, I had two professors in my
master's program that really encouraged me, which
was important, since nearly all the male peers in
my classes were hostile to me and resented my
success in class - they actually asked me to stop
doing so well as they said it made them look bad.
During my PhD work at another university, I had a
really hard time from one professor in particular
who really tried to make me quit graduate school or
at least switch out of engineering. He was known to
have said publicly that he did not think women
belonged in engineering. The postdocs in my lab
and the women I met through women's studies were
the ones who really supported me through my
PhD program.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
No, my work environment was not very good a lot of the
time. My first postdoctoral position was the
exception - I had a supervisor who was essentially
free of gender bias, he was just amazing. And he
put me in connection with women in our field who
were major researchers and great role models. But
that only lasted two years. The next position
was in such a toxic environment it was unbelievable.
But not just for women - for everyone there. Of course,
for the women, there were special ways in which the
supervisor made your life miserable, but everyone
was pretty much in the same boat. That place made
me want to leave research. I went into industry
in a field unrelated to engineering but still
scientifically connected. I got treated with a lot
more respect there and had a pretty successful time.
Though the top jobs were all held by men in the
companies in which I worked. Now I work full time
in a program dedicated to recruiting and retaining
women in engineering and science. The support
and encouragement I get now is great - I have some
fantastic women colleagues to work with and I get
great support from the administration, because they
truly value this endeavor.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
Yes, this happened in graduate school when I was
working on my PhD. It was what pushed me over to
explore women's studies, because I was looking for
answers for what I had experienced. I knew something
was wrong but I had no words for it.
I am absolutely sure that my career would have
turned out quite differently if gender bias did
not exist in the world. I would have been given more
opportunities, promoted more by my committee members,
I would not have had a spouse who expected my life
to revolve around his, I would not have been worried
about walking alone to the parking lot late at night
after a long session in the lab, I would not have had
to feel awkward at a conference when men started
telling sexist jokes, and on and on and on. I would
not have been sexually harassed by a professor.
I might not even have left the research life.
On the other hand, I like my life and what I have
made of it, and I love the work I do now.
My female colleagues who are members of under-
represented minority groups (I am white) had extra
things to deal with that I did not, around race issues.
So they had to deal with both race and sex.
It's important to realize that those two factors
do interact in all kinds of ways to affect the
opportunities one has. I may have been suspect
on account of being female, but I never had to defend
myself against stereotypes based on race.
I always try to remind myself that, while I was indeed
hampered by sex discrimination, I always, at the
same time, benefitted from my race, in
the ways that all white people do in a racist society.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Well, I think this is hard to answer. I have done
so many different things since finishing my
education that I haven't had a chance to see how
opportunities within one area of endeavor have
changed. I would say that I have moved to where
I saw opportunities existing, and created what
I could for myself. Perhaps it's correct to say
that my opportunities have increased as my vision
of acceptable and challenging careers has
widened beyond the narrow view given to me in
graduate school.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
I don't think that I ever felt part of any
network of women, scientists or not, until my
PhD program, and then it was the network in
women's studies that was so very valuable to me.
Prior to that I had hung out more with the
guys and more or less kept away other women, as
I was trying to be "one of the guys."
In industry and in my current job I have had
great networks of women scientists and engineers.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Follow your heart! Don't let anyone discourage you
or tell you what you should be or do. What the
heck do they know about you anyway?!?!? Always listen
to the voices of those who encourage you, and ignore
the ones who don't. Pick a field of study because
you love it, not because it will get you lots of
money (though if it gets you lots of money, too,
that's great.) Never doubt for a minute that there
are all kinds of fantastic ways to contribute to
the world around you and make things better for all
by being a scientists or engineer.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
No role models. I had one woman engineering professor
during my entire undergrad/graduate career, and she
was just very hostile to ALL students. In graduate
school, during my PhD program, I took three women's
studies courses, one of which was history of women
in science and medicine. It was wonderful. Those
courses connected me to my past, my heritage - to my
foremothers. They made a huge difference to me.
It really meant a lot to me to know how much wonderful
stuff women had done over the centuries despite the
incredible obstacles placed before them. It helped
keep me from giving up.
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
I never had children, in part because I could not
see a way to have them and get done what I needed
to to get my PhD and continue my research career.
And then at some point I decided I didn't want
children after all. For my friends and colleagues
who have had children, yes, absolutely it affects
you, if you are a woman. It is easier for a man
to have children and not have it affect his work
and career at all, if he is the kind of guy who
is willing to dump it all on his wife. But I see
more and more men these days who are willing to
take on the burden jointly - and universities are
starting, just barely, to realize that faculty
members have lives that require time.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I love team work, when the team members and you
get along great and value each others' different
skills and abilities. A group of three to four
is ideal for me. A partnership is great, too.
Working alone is no fun for me! I like interaction
and the energy that comes from having someone
to bounce ideas off of, and to get their ideas
bounced off you!
I can't actually think of any situation I've been
in, other than my doctoral dissertation, where I
did NOT have team members to work with, rely on,
depend on me. Even in my doctoral dissertation,
the technician and the postdocs were there for me
to ask questions and get help.
What is your highest level of education attained?
postdoc
1998


Submitted April 30, 2003, 11:16 AM

Were you encouraged, as a girl, to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the nature of the encouragement / discouragement.

No, I was not encouraged to pursue a career in the sciences. But I was not discouraged either. I was raised by my mother who raised three children on a secretary's salary. Just going to college was a big deal, the college major was not discussed.
Did you receive any support from your college professors to pursue a career in the sciences or applied sciences? Whether you answer yes or no, please elaborate on the type of support (or lack thereof).
Yes, to a certain degree. The professors encouraged all students to pursue careers in the subject taught by the professor. If you took a speech class, the professors exposed you to careers in speech writing. If you took a computer science class (a new major in 1978), you could learn about opportunities for computer science graduates.
Please describe your career experiences as a woman scientist, science educator, or scientist in training since completing your bachelor\'s degree. Did your work environment fully encourage you to pursue your career?
Yes, my employers (starting in 1981) have offered tuition assistance. They have always favored people who could do the work well. If you wrote good code, documented it well and could interact with clients well then you would get good assignments and progressively higher pay. Although most programmers were men there were enough women, especially in business software applications.
Was there a particular event or period in your career when you realized that you did not have access to the same opportunities as your male colleagues? If so, please describe. If not, please describe the experiences which have led you to feel that your career has not been hampered in this way.
No, not yet. I have been able to get what I want. I rose to Director and supervised other programmers within eight years. I currently work full time from a home office and visit my main office once a month. I want this (because I have three children and I want to be here when they come home) and I worked hard to be valuable to my employer so that they would be willing to give me a flexible schedule. In the end, employers want results. With the right training and smart work habits, a programmer (software engineer) can be twice as productive as the coworker down the hall. The productive employee is always in demand, male or female. Excellent technical skills are the great equalizer in the male/female employement pool.
Have your opportunities as a woman scientist changed over time? If so, was the change for better or worse?
Yes, the .com bubble and family needs caused career changes but mostly it has been for the better because it gave me more variety of tasks, more exposure to different technology platforms.
How important were networks of women scientists during the various stages of your education and career (e.g. grammar school, high school, college, graduate school)?
Not important, I did not have such a all-female network. The coworker network (co-ed) was a great support, especially older coworkers (males) who offered advice on training, trends in technology, how to go to bat for a higher salary, etc.
What advice would you provide to young women considering a career in science?
Get excellent technical training, read technical journals, become an expert in one area so that you will have an advantage over other colleagues.
When you attended college/university, did you encounter woman scientists and/or engineers whom you considered role models? Did you take any classes on the history of women in science and engineering? Did you learn about the accomplishments of women scientists/engineers?
Yes, one summer I worked as an intern in the engineering department for the local phone company, then AT T (ma bell). Although my summer position was a drafting clerk, I saw one woman among the 7 engineers in the department next door. Although I pursued computer science, I remember thinking I would rather do what she was doing than what my mother was doing (secretarial work).
In your experience, did it seem that the demand of raising a family, either by you or by colleagues, affect the type of work that you do?
Absolutely. I left management and focused on technical specialties so that I could be a productive employee and yet 'turn it off' at 5 to focus on my family. Also, as I stated earlier, working from a remote home office is great if you are a software engineer but not so good if you are a supervisor. I willingly accept this trade off because I want the best for my children. I can ramp back up in my career when they are older. I believe you can have it all, you just can't have it all at the same time.
Have you worked with a colleague or a limited amount of partners over a long time? How do you prefer to work, individually or as a team?
I enjoy the team environment. Even when working alone from a remote home office, I rely on the phone, email and especially instant message to keep in regular touch with coworkers, bounce technical ideas off of them, trouble shoot, etc.
What is your highest level of education attained?
Some graduate school
1988


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