Last week, an op-ed was published in Science Magazine targeted at @science.sam for her encouragement of women in STEM on Instagram. Many would wonder, why would an Instagram account that is aimed at lifting scientists of all genders all around the world might receive some negative criticism. The piece also pokes at other similar Instagram accounts centered on #SciComm because the author believes that "time spent on Instagram is time away from research." I stand with @science.sam, #ScientistsWhoSelfie, and with the #SciComm community on Instagram because social media is a great way to:
- share scientific ideas and research in a way that is approachable and understandable to the general public.
- garner a supportive community for others who are passionate about the sciences.
- connect and communicate with like-minded professionals you may not have had the chance to in real life.
- learn about scientific concepts you may not have known about otherwise.
- put faces, personalities, and names to the people making huge differences in our world.
- show people what actual living scientists look like.
- help close gaps in the workforce (women, minorities, non-binary, disabled, younger, older, the list goes on), especially within the STEM fields.
It's hard to feel like you can do a lot to help these causes, so why not take advantage of social media to do this? It gives us a voice. It lets us be heard. Science cannot be silenced.
With that, I'd like to share some of my favorite accounts by women in the #SciComm and #STEM Instagram community (in no particular order):
- and sooooo many more I'm sure I'm forgetting :/
This fantastic post from Elle at LaBeaute.org completely sums up my sentiments. This post is all about the importance of empowering other women and empowering yourself. Because when others try to tear you down, their insecurities and projections shouldn't creep into your beliefs as long as you know you're a badass. I'll leave you with my favorite quotes from Elle's post:
Learn to love yourself and others as well. That’s the first step of empowering yourself. Having a positive aura doesn’t only benefit you, but can motivate people around you in a big way. Distance yourself from people who belittle you, keep company with people who are comfortable in their own skin. “Self-acceptance is skin-deep and promotes you to find balance both physically and mentally, so practice it while you can.”
Spending your life in self-acceptance is far better than the one lived in self-loathing.
Remember – when women support each other, incredible things happen!