As we rapidly approach the end of 2015, I’m going to be the last one to write my #DiversityJC 2015 review. If you missed, you should check out @IHStreet‘s review here and @DrEmilySKlein‘s review here! They did a great job listing topics covered in 2015, so I’m going to focus more in what’s for 2016.
The Diversity Journal Club (#DiversityJC) was born of conversations between Emily and me back in September, 2014. We planned to discuss articles and blog posts about Diversity in academia. So much changed in 2015! Ian joined our group in March, 2015, as I was madly trying to find a job. That was very much needed, and an excellent addition to our group!
However, I’m not sure why, our #DiversityJC started to slow down a bit. Maybe because people got busy. Or because we already covered most of the topics about Diversity and started to repeat ourselves? Probably a combination of both and some more. But, as Emily wrote in her review, “there will be new ways the community will find to demonstrate how important diversity, in all its forms, is for not only critical for scientists, but for science.” I believe our #DiversityJC is an important way to bring awareness of this topic to our busy lives! And as Ian mentioned in his review, we need to “Remember science is done by people, but in the rush of doing science, it’s easy to look over that fact.”
I know you’re busy. We’re all busy. I am busy too! But we still need diversity initiatives not as a matter of altruism or avoiding controversy, but because it matters! What is diversity? Diversity matters, not only race, ethnicity, and gender but also religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, and age. Diversity brings a wider range of perspectives, increasing overall creativity. Interactions with different people increase our knowledge and enhance our self-awareness. By moving beyond yourself, you gain a panoramic perspective of the world around you and a more complete view of your place in it. Not only in Universities, but in our daily lives! So, regardless if you are in academia or not, we need to be aware of the importance of Diversity and talk about it. And turn words into actions, trying to make the world a better place. Am I being too naive or idealistic? Maybe, but I prefer to think that all of us can contribute in a small way to bring diversity to our lives and help to change things, one step at a time.
Because of our busy schedules, we are going to change a bit the format of our #DiversityJC for 2016. We will still have live discussions once a month (3rd Friday of the month, 2-3pm EST), but we want to publish more blogposts about Diversity and more importantly, we want to hear about what YOU have to say! Last year we had two excellent guests posts: @AlyciaPhD talking about her hiring success history and @wandsci‘s tips for handling career anxiety. Let’s bring more diversity to our #DiversityJC in 2016! Emily, Ian and me are going to keep an eye on Twitter and invite peeps to write guest posts to our blog, but feel free to reach us anytime if a topic comes to mind that would fit the scope of our #DiversityJC.
Hoping we all have a diverse and happy 2016!