RPS celebrates the United Nations International Day of Women and Girls in Science (Part 3)

11.02.19

RPS is excited to celebrate the United Nations International Day of Women and Girls in Science on February 11th. To understand what a career in science offers, we interviewed several staff members. These women use their deep expertise in a variety of sectors to provide complex solutions to our clients and solve challenging problems. 

Here are some of their responses: 

 

Maddison Watt, Graduate Environmental Scientist - Australia

What inspired you to choose a career in science?

I chose to pursue a career in science because I’ve always loved learning about how things work. I ended up studying environmental science because I think it’s fascinating, environmental systems are so incredibly complex and I think it’s important to understand how they function so that we can better manage the way people operate within them.

What do you like most about your job?

I am fortunate enough to work in a team full of great people, they are experts in their field and I am privileged to work with and learn from them everyday.

Why do you think it is important for women and girls to consider careers in science?

I think it’s important that women and girls are encouraged to consider careers in whatever field they are passionate about. Science is interesting, it trains you how to problem solve and think critically and teaches you that you won’t always know the answer and that’s ok.

 

Polly Grundy, Section Head, Liquid Chromatography - United Kingdom

What inspired you to choose a career in science?

I have always enjoyed learning about science and then being able to see the principles I have learned being demonstrated in everyday life. This inspired me to take Chemistry at university, and from there, I found many interesting and varied career options once I graduated.  Choosing analytical chemistry has given me many different experiences, from analysing illegal drugs and giving evidence in court through to finding out how much dangerous acrylamide there is in a cup of coffee.

 What do you like most about your job?

I really enjoy the problem solving aspects of my work and using my technical knowledge to understand the issues and come up appropriate with solutions. It is very satisfying to know you have contributed to a deeper understanding of the environment around you, and helped with better controlling the chemicals we are all exposed to on a day-to-day basis. I also enjoy the teamwork aspect of the role, and have been lucky enough to work with many fun and inspiring teams of people over the years.

Who has inspired you most?

Early in my career, I started a new job working in a very fast paced environmental laboratory and everything was new to me. I had a very short time to learn the job and the team leader took great care to help me understand what I was doing and why. His patience with his staff and desire to help was inspiring. The skills and knowledge he taught me were the start point for the career I have today.

Why do you think it is important for women and girls to consider careers in science?

Working in science has been a great career for me and I would encourage anyone to consider it. There are so many varied opportunities available with a science background, and the skills learnt can be used for many related areas. I chose to specialise in analytical chemistry, but there are many other really interesting options such as research and development into new pharmaceuticals, forensic science, quality control in manufacturing processes as well as areas such as legal patent regulations.

 

Alyssa Templeton, Physical Oceanographer/Data Analyst - United States of America

What inspired you to choose a career in science?

My elementary school had a strong science program. They held yearly science fairs, and I loved coming up with the question and performing the experiment. Funnily enough, my 5th grade project was a very elementary version of what my masters dissertation was on, investigating salinity effect on sea ice in the Arctic.

Why do you think it is important for women and girls to consider careers in science?

I think it’s important to follow a career in what interests you. If women and girls enjoy and have an aptitude for science, nothing should hold them back in pursuing a career in what they are interested in.

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