Sheffield women promote equality for International Day of Women and Girls in Science

10 February 2022

Credit: Dr Melissa Butt, STEM Education Director

Sheffield scientists and a founder of a STEM educational facility have shared how they are actively encouraging young girls and women to focus on STEM subjects, ahead of tomorrow’s events.

Founder of ‘Discovery STEM Learning Destination in Sheffield’, Dr Melissa Butt, founded her non-profit organisation that focuses on STEM career building in young people from ages five to eighteen.

Dr Butt said: “I have observed many situations where special engineering workshops are given to only girls in schools or girls are given pink pencils because there are not enough girls in engineering. These very things cause girls to be put off.

“The way I have inspired girls is by generating a positive environment where they are treated equally told about opportunities and no negativities are highlighted.”

The International Day of Women and Girls in Science is founded by UNESCO and UN-Women. It lets us put women’s accomplishments in science on a pedestal and focus on girls who are wanting to pursue or begin entering Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) careers and it encourages equal participation.

Rebecca Jones, a Science technician in a Sheffield secondary school said: “We try to promote women in STEM regularly to let girls know the career options are there if they want them.

Credit: Dr Melissa Butt, STEM Education Director

“If I can inspire one girl to follow her dreams, I have done my bit.”

UNESCO say that gender equality is a global priority for them and that they want to support young girls in education and make their ideas heard to stimulate equality.

Georgina Bond, a science anatomy technician in Sheffield said: “The world is changing and it’s nice to see women being respected for their work but there is definitely a long way to go.”

“Equality is so important and biological sex should never be a hindrance to the career you want to pursue.”

“I’m very lucky to have surrounded myself with strong, intelligent women in the same field as me.”

Written by Lisa Mercatelli

Trainee journalist keeping the world informed 🙂

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