Women in Science
John Howard, Director of the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) writes in the recent NIOSH eNews Volume 11, Number 8, December 2013 about women in science.
In our ever changing workforce, NIOSH is proud to join national efforts to address the disproportionately small representation of women working in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). As important as it is to recruit more women into STEM careers, discussions must be held as to how to boost retention of women in these fields. This month I am pleased to announce the release of the Women in Science video series, spotlighting just a few of the many talented female researchers at NIOSH. Drawing from their diverse backgrounds, the women share their journeys to science and offer encouragement to aspiring scientists.
As part of its mission, NIOSH develops and supports the next generation of occupational safety and health professionals. NIOSH funds programs to support occupational safety and health research and education through 18 regional university-based Education and Research Centers; 10 Agricultural Disease and Injury Research, Education, and Prevention Centers; and 28 Training Project Grants that train occupational health professionals and researchers to help meet the increasing demand for occupational physicians, occupational nurses, industrial hygienists, and safety professionals.
NIOSH Education and Research Centers (ERCs) have served as a pipeline for careers in occupational safety and health. Individuals have the opportunity to receive training and gain hands-on experience in various occupational safety and health (OSH) disciplines. NIOSH provides about half of the financial support for professional OSH disciplines. In academic year 2011–2012, 222 professionals graduated from the ERC training programs with specialized training in a variety of OSH fields. Of the 222 ERC graduates, 211 (95%) entered careers in OSH or entered more advanced OSH degree programs. More information on NIOSH training programs can be found at www.cdc.gov/niosh/oep/training.html
NIOSH is dedicated to protecting the safety and health of the American workforce through innovative research. This commitment to ensure the health of the nation’s workers starts at NIOSH. We support a diverse workforce and try to accommodate the demands of family and work. The Women in Science video series touches upon the value NIOSH places upon work-life balance. The women scientists featured in the video series discuss the importance of setting time aside for themselves and their families. NIOSH appreciates the dedication of all women in science, especially those working in occupational safety and health.
NIOSH encourages you to learn more about women in science and to reflect upon how your organization can better engage and support women in STEM. Please help us raise awareness by circulating the Women in Science video series.
The NIOSH Women in Science video series can be accessed at www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/women/2013-wis
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