Why they think I can’t make it in STEM – Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics
As a woman in STEM – and a proud one, am I not tired of hearing the thousand and one reasons why society thinks I can’t make it in the path I have chosen? By the way, how on earth can they map out my career and life plans without my permission?
Today, I’d like to share with you some of the misconceptions people have about women in STEM. Then I’d share with you some of the challenges we face as African women in STEM. Ready? Let’s go!
Women in STEM shouldn’t look good. No makeup, no nice hairstyles.
Marriage is a problem for women in STEM because guys are afraid of us.
Women in STEM, especially those in high positions are not friendly.
Managers do not employ women into STEM fields for various reasons – women will end up giving birth, have cramps every time in the month hence leave work unfinished at certain times.
Some of the challenges we face as African women in STEM include:
● Parenting being gender biased. For example, parents buying toy cars for boys and dolls for girls tell it all.
● There is too much pressure at home especially dealing with house chores.
● Society frowning against women in STEM.
● Lack of female role models.
● Some women discouraging other women in their STEM journey.
● Women are not curious to explore more educational opportunities.
I believe that with determination and hard work, we can overcome all these challenges and limitations and create a lasting impact for our continent.