It’s my great pleasure to congratulate Skookumchick (Rants of a Feminist Engineer) and the world of women bloggers in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) on the first anniversary of their blog carnival, Scientiae. With the theme of “renewal,” I’ll leave it to Skookum to explain how and why she started the carnival:
I decided to start the thing-that-would-turn-into-Scientiae (name by Theo Bromine) because I had found it to be meaningful to read all these amazing blogs being written by women in science, engineering and math. I found it helpful to hear their stories, to know that, while I was toiling away in my little office, so many of them were toiling away in their offices at the very same time. I thought it might be worth trying to collect these individual pursuits together so the online community could grow stronger for each other, as well as so newcomers could find community more easily. And so the first Scientiae went forth on March 1, 2007.
I’m in a different place than I was this time last year, and so are a lot of folks out there in the “women in science” blogiverse. It seemed to me, in reading all these posts for this anniversary carnival, that we do sort of have a big diverse family going here. Some of us are just starting our careers, others of us have been going for quite some time. Some of us are pregnant or have kids, others are thankfully (and not so thankfully) kidless, still others of us are looking after older family members, and even some of us have had family members and coworkers die this year. We talk about our work – what we do, what we’re passionate about in science, math and engineering, what we study, what we hope for, what we find troubling. Some of us are moving soon; others just have, and still others are happy where they are. We’ve got people with their families around them, and a host of two-body problems. We talk about our hobbies – we have quite a few gardeners and photographers and knitters amongst us. And bloggers.
I wish that such a carnival existed when PharmMom and PharmSis were coming up through the ranks.
I’ve hosted one local (Tar Heel Tavern) and one international (The Skeptics’ Circle) carnival and I can tell you that it is a labor of love – lots of effort but incredibly satisfying. To keep a carnival going collectively is a tremendous accomplishment and mad props go to Skookum and the women STEM blogger community on their first year.
And while Scientiae is clearly focused on women’s voices, I was fortunate to be one of the “equality-minded men scientists: asked to contribute to Scientiae #13 on talking to yourself about issues of gender in science.
For my female colleagues, Scientiae is a place to gather, share, and act. But for us male scientists, Scientiae keeps us in touch with the challenges faced by our female colleagues, including our wives, partners, and trainees.
Thank you for all of your hard work and for the insights on how much more we need to do the ensure equality in science and engineering.