SWCC Blog: My Experience at Reclaiming STEM West Coast 2019
This summer I had the incredible opportunity to attend the Reclaiming STEM West Coast workshop in Irvine, California. I am so thankful to the organizers for creating this workshop, and my lab for allowing me to attend... but I had great difficulty explaining my experience to others.
My friends and coworkers asked me "How was it? Was it amazing?" and yes, it absolutely was. But it wasn't the kind of amazing I expected.
Reclaiming STEM confirmed every suspicion I ever had about STEM fields. I heard over a hundred voices echoing my own feelings, that STEM is a challenging place to be a minority. It was incredibly validating, but also very, very depressing.
When I started grad school, I was absolutely certain that I wanted to be a scientist. I was closeted, and lost, and miserable, but absolutely certain that I wanted to be in STEM. Three years later, I'm out, and finally happy with myself... but I'm no longer sure there's a place for me in science. Being queer in STEM is hard, and progress is slow, and I am tired.
Regardless, I wouldn't change my experience at Reclaiming STEM, and I wanted to share it with others. To learn more, read my whole blog post on the SWCC website.