The average participation of women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) in Europe is 17%. There is a substantial gap of women and men occupation in STEM, for several reasons. Some sources point out it is due to lack of role models, few options for practical experience and lack of mentorship.
OSKar has been involved since 2016 in several outreach projects to reach out for younger generations to get interested in optics, and this year, much of the focus is on getting the interest of young women and girls in optics.
On international women’s day, our vicepresident, Isabel Allegro, got together in an informal meeting with Elena, Virajini and Diana to talk about optics, life and everything in between, in Karlsruhe. As always, great ideas come to the table to implement during 2017.
OSKar will be involved in Girls’ Day, promoting interest in optics for young girls with fun activities and interactive experiments that show that optics are a great area to develop a career in. Isabel will be present, along with her colleagues, to give positive role models for girls who might be interested in optics but were not aware of it before!
OSKar is interested in promoting optics to the general population, but as a multicultural group of students, we are also interested in promoting women in STEM, and working in an open and egalatarian scientific community.