This past week’s Diversity Journal Club (#DiversityJC), we discussed this article suggested by our friend Melissa Wilson Sayres. This article postulates that beliefs about evolution, those I was simply hand-wringing over, actually do have an impact on minority students entering into evolutionary biology.
We also suggested a secondary reading from @ScienceCareers and @KennyGibbsPhD. This blogpost states that scientists from underrepresented minority (URM) groups and women seek research-focused academic careers less often than males from well-represented groups, even when they have “the same level of research productivity and … the same mentoring. Also,This and other work shows that women and URM scientists on average “choose differently.” Their choices are made “outside of ability, outside of competence”—but in keeping with expressed desires to pursue social justice, community involvement, and altruism:
We had a tiny group this week, and I apologize for not doing a great job leading our discussion. Still recovering from my personal issues. Anyways, I started the conversation by throwing a question from our article:
One clear issue stated by Biochem Belle was representation in the field. Meaning, strong influence by presence of those of similar race/ethnicity. It seems that ~100% of WOC do service/outreach, as Alycia Austin pointed out. But that’s not all. Dr. Wrasse also suggested 1) exposure to job diversity with regard to choosing a major and 2) a feeling of having to land well paying job.
YES! Very important for probably all participants of our #DiversityJC. I am happy to see some job adds asking for a “Diversity statement”, and although it still doesn’t count for tenure, is a beginning! In that line Biochem Belle shared this article with us, where they examine application materials (diversity statements) for assistant professor positions in 3 academic disciplines.
Although religion seemed to play a big part in the decisions, according to our article, our group didn’t agree with that. This may be PART of the history, but it is unlikely that religion and science cannot coexist.
So true. One thing this #DiversityJC made me realize is that I don’t serve the community as much as I should. And I hope that you all state the importance of diversity and community service. And let’s do more of it!
Thank you all that joined our #DiversityJC this week: Rebecca Pollet (@), PinkGlitteryBrain (@aiquintero), Biochem Belle (@biochembelle), Dr. Wrasse (@labroides), Alycia Mosley Austin (@AlyciaPhD). And hope to see you all next week, when we are planning to discuss the struggles of our current job market and alternative jobs!