This is the beginning of a topic I plan to focus on fairly frequently; girls and women in STEM. The first post is merely an introduction and aims to simply scratch the surface as I have a lot of opinions on this subject. I’ll try to organize my thoughts before sharing publicly, but I expect as I get feedback from others, they will better solidify themselves and I’ll find myself arguing with myself in a Jekyll and Hyde fashion before you all.
First, I’d like to say that I consider myself to be relatively gender-neutral in my interests and hobbies, fading in and out of being referred to as a tomboy or grease monkey by others. These are not words I use to describe myself, but I can’t deny that our society has deemed many of my social traits as markers of masculinity. I like cars and machines, I prefer to fix stuff instead of asking for help and I have been an avid gamer since I was a kid, leaning more toward first-person shooter RPG’s. Somewhere along the way my opinion about being a female has changed. I don’t recall ever feeling like my gender was an issue when I was younger, but as I grew to nearly 6 feet tall by middle-school and developed tertiary and secondary sex characteristics, things evolved. Please keep in mind that the following opinions are my own and based solely on my own personal experiences and observations unless otherwise noted.
Second, I’d like to say that this is not going to be an easy topic to tackle. We are talking about literally generations of womens’ rights being discussed and all the many, many subsequent debates that have taken place that aren’t about rights, but expectations. If you’re looking for a quick guide to getting little girls into computer science and engineering, I’ll post that soon. If you’re a fellow femme just looking for a warm, dry place to huddle up in with someone who totally gets you, you’re probably in the right place. Don’t expect this to be a man-bashing series, as I have many men to thank for my continuation on the off-beaten path. I plan to address this topic from so many angles and will try to focus on one facet with minimal tangents. If you’ve got something you’d like me to debate or think you can change my mind about something, please leave a respectfully-written comment by logging in and I’ll try to address as many as I can within a week or two.