WISEatlantic Chair, Dr. Tamara Franz-Odendaal, was honored to participate in the Diversity in STEM: Why It Matters panel discussion at Acadia University on March 6th, 2018. Other panelists included Ulrike Bahr-Gedalia, CEO of Digital Nova Scotia, Dr. Imogen Coe, Dean of Faculty of Science at Ryerson, and Denise Pothier, Vice President of Practice Services at Stantec. Special thanks to Dr. Randy Newman at Acadia for organizing this event. WISEatlantic was a proud sponsor.
On April 7, 2018 WISEatlantic hosted their largest Girls Get WISE Science Retreat yet with 80 girls participating! This year featured three hands-on activities, Nifty Neuroscience, Electrifying Chemistry, and the Mathematics of Winning. We were also fortunate to have El Jones, the Mount's Nancy's Chair in Women's Studies, join us to perform an inspiring spoken word poem. As always, thank you to our sponsors, partners, volunteers, and role models for making this event a success!
The NSERC Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering are pleased to release a new report entitled "Analysis of the Distribution of Gender in STEM Fields in Canada". This report, compiled by Andrea Perreault, takes a focused look at the percentages of women and minority groups in the STEM professions in all regions of Canada.
The full report is available on our resource page.
The WISEatlantic Partnerships Program is an opportunity for community organizations in Atlantic Canada to apply for small one-year sponsorship for new activities and/or projects that promote the outreach, recruitment, and retention of girls, young women, and industry professionals in STEM. The Partnerships Program had six applicants for 2017 and the following three were successful in receiving funds for innovative programs in 2018:
Congrats to the successful applicants! The next round of submissions will open in September 2018 on our Partnerships Program page.
On November 16th, 2017, twenty-seven Aboriginal youth from across the province came together at Mount Saint Vincent University for a fun day to explore what STEM is all about.
The youth participated in a hands-on engineering design challenge where they worked in teams to design and construct a functioning windmill with limited resources. They also had the opportunity to learn about exciting STEM careers, such as chemical engineering and dietetics, from local Aboriginal professionals working in these fields. The participants found it a challenging but fun day and were enthusiastic to participate in more hands-on activities, with several of the youth commenting ‘it was really fun and would love to come again’.
The NSERC CWSE National Network National Conference Grant is administered by the NSERC CWSE Chairs. Applications for funding are accepted three times per year. Applications may be submitted by individual students, professors, professionals outside of academia or organizations during the intake periods. All received applications will be reviewed for consideration.
The objective of the NSERC CWSE National Network National Conference Grant is to support national conferences that contribute to the advancement of women in Science and Engineering (S&E).
Winter intake period begins February 1, 2018 and ends February 15, 2018.
To find out more or to download the grant forms, visit our resource page.
WISEatlantic and the Community SciMath Program at Mount Saint Vincent University hosted the first STEMaware event at the Mount on October 18th. This event brought together High School girls in grades 9-12 with current Mount BSc students who had the opportunity to chat informally with Mount BSc Alumnae.
Prior to the students meeting Alumnae, Career Services at the Mount held a session for both High School students and Mount students that discussed STEM careers, the importance of networking, and preparing students with questions they could ask the alumnae. Alumnae shared their current careers with students and how a degree in Science benefited their career paths. Thanks to everyone who came out for a great event, especially all our Mount Alumnae!
Click here for more info on the Community SciMath Program!
The new Girls Get WISE Science Camp for girls 15 & 16 years old, which took place August 28-31, 2017, was pleased to welcome the Federal Science Minister, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan.
On Tuesday, August 29th, 2017 the Honourable Kirsty Duncan stopped by the Girls Get WISE Science Camp to share with the girls her experience working as a science researcher. Minister Duncan also spoke with each of the participants and encouraged them to continue their math and science studies. We are thankful to the Minister and her team for the visit! To read more about the Ministers visit click here.
Girls in this camp also had the opportunity to learn about research in areas such as Organic Chemistry, Marine Biology, and Mathematics, from local female researchers who came to share their research with the girls. Of course, participants also participated in fun and challenging hands-on science experiments and activities throughout the week.
Robin Durnford writes how university's reliance on contract labour is creating a hostile environment for female professors. This article sheds light on the impact of contract positions, and their ramifications for women in academia.
Read the article here.
This past May, The Honorable Geoff Regan, MP for Halifax West and Speaker of the House of Commons, visited Dr. Tamara Franz-Odendaal's lab to learn more about her research, and the WISEatlantic program. Dr. Franz-Odendaal was later featured in his Summer 2017 constituency newsletter.
Read the article (on page two of the newsletter) here.
The annual Girls Get WISE Science Summer Camp was an exciting week-long day-camp that took place from July 17-21 at Mount Saint Vincent University. 23 girls ages 12-14 years old explored science through hands-on activities, and discovered careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) by meeting and chatting with women working in STEM fields.
Girls enjoyed tracking the development of zebra fish embryo’s throughout the week, and participating in fun engineering design challenges, a Crime Scene Investigation, soldering to create circuits for a flight simulator with Lockheed Martin, and much more! Camp participants also met inspiring women during the role model session, including women working in biology, engineering, and technology.
Thank you to our volunteers, and everyone who took part in making the camp such a success! Pictures taken during the camp can be viewed on our Facebook page.
Is promoting science your passion? Apply for an NSERC PromoScience Grant! The application deadline is September 15, 2017.
NSERC invites applications that promote the natural sciences and engineering to Canada’s young people, particularly to groups such as girls and Aboriginal peoples that are under-represented in scientific and engineering careers. Grants may be used to cover improvements to program content or delivery, as well as for new programs and activities.
To learn more, visit their website.
From November 6 to 8, 2017, advocates of gender equality policy from science, innovation and development fields will participate in the Gender Summit North America 2017, to be held in Montréal, Canada. Those present will have the opportunity to engage in fruitful discussions under the overarching theme of "Pluralism, Ethnicity & Inclusion – Canadian Values in a Global Context."
The summit will engage individuals and communities in transformative actions on gender equity, pluralism, ethnicity, and inclusion in science and STEM, social science and health research. This is the first time a Canadian city will be hosting the Summit.
Learn more by visiting their website.
Engineers Canada is working to increase the representation of women within the engineering field through its 30 by 30 initiative. This initiative has a goal of raising the percentage of newly licensed engineers who are women to 30 percent by the year 2030.
Thirty per cent is universally held as the tipping point for sustainable change–reaching 30 by 30 will help drive the shift in the overall membership of the engineering profession as more and more women continue to enter the profession. This initiative began in 2014, new numbers from 2016 show a slight national increase but there is still much work to be done.
Click here for more information on the initiative and on the new data.