International Day Of Women And Girls In Science
Without a doubt, the world depends on science and the scientists who make both small and large discoveries that have created our modern world. We need as many scientists working towards society’s benefit as we can get. Unfortunately, too few women are working in the sciences today, and that’s something that all of us need to correct.
Thank goodness we can level the playing field and bring more women into the scientific community. We can begin that process by observing the International Day of Women and Girls in Science on February 11th every year. This holiday not only honors the achievements of women already working in the sciences but also encourages girls from all over the world to think about STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) careers.
The History of International Day of Women and Girls in Science
This holiday was enacted relatively recently by the United Nations General Assembly. It was created by a resolution on December 22, 2015, to recognize the role that girls and women have played over the years in the fields of science and technology. Since its creation, this holiday has been implemented by UN Women and UNESCO in collaboration with intergovernmental institutions, agencies, and other partners. As such, it’s a day used to encourage girls and women to consider a career in science.
A Small Sample of Female Scientists Through the Years
Although it would be impossible for us to cover every woman who has made contributions to the world of science in an article of this size, we did want to list some of the women scientists who have inspired us.
- Marie Curie (1867-1934)
- Lise Meitner (1878-1968)
- Chien-Shiung Wu (1912-1997)
- Sally Ride (1951-2012)
- Mae Jemison (1956-)
- Hedy Lamarr (1914-2000)
Observing International Day of Women and Girls in Science
Anyone wanting to observe this holiday can do so by taking a few moments to learn about some of the female trailblazers in the field of science. You can read books such as “Ellen Swallow: The Woman Who Founded Ecology,” “Blazing the Trail: Essays by Leading Women in Science,” “Lise Meitner: A Life in Physics,” or “In Praise of Imperfection” by Rita Levi-Montalcini.
You can also take the time to watch some movies that feature women in STEM—featuring either fictional or real-life stories. These movies include “Gravity” (2013), “Arrival” (2016), “Contact” (1997), “Hidden Figures” (2016), and “Enigma” (2001).
This day is also a good day to encourage young women to go into the field of science. If you have a daughter with a scientific aptitude, then encourage her to pursue her dreams. You can also help raise funds for organizations such as Girls Who Code. Girls Who Code is a nonprofit organization attempting to close the gender gap in technology.