International Women's Day 2020

Issued: Tue, 10 Mar 2020 16:19:00 GMT

To mark International Women's Day on 8 March 2020 the School of Life Sciences held a programme of events to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women within the University of Glasgow and as a call to action for accelerating equality.

Women in Medicine: Past, Present and Future event - Wed 4 March

Dr Doyin Atewologun addressing the theatre in her President's Talk

As part of the Series of Medical Lates programme, the School's Anatomy Facility, in partnership with Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, held a hugely successful Women in Medicine: Past, Present and Future event.

Dr Doyin Atewologun, the Director of the Gender, Leadership and Inclusion Centre at Cranfield School of Management, delivered a thought-provoking and interesting President's Leadership Lecture.

Prior to Dr Atewologun's address, attendees had the opportunity to talk with researchers and explore our heritage collections, learn about significant medical women in history, and discover how women are shaping the future of medicine at our research stations

Research stations included: 

  • Women in Medical Books | Dr Ourania Varsou, University of Glasgow 
  • Women of Anatomy | Jenn Gillespie, University of Glasgow
  • Women of the College | Dr Morven McElroy, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow 
  • Art and Pain | Grace Worm 
  • Elizabeth Blackwell | Caroline Davidson 
  • STEM Equals     

Women in Science - Friday 6 March

Each for Equal pic with 5 SoLS Women in Science speakers

Organised by the newly formed Life Sciences' Athena SWAN Student Committee, the Women in Science event was held in the Sir James Black Building on the afternoon of Friday 6 March.

Staff and students heard from five women within the School as they discussed their field and career path, followed by informal discussion propagated by listeners and breaks to mingle and enjoy some food and drink.

Athena Swan Student Committee member Agate Baumane explained: "After some brainstorming we decided on a format of short talks from different women in Life Sciences.

"With the help of Tracy Wilson, we narrowed our selection down to invite five speakers spread across the different School of Life Sciences degree groups.

"Our five speakers were Dr Emma Bailey (Human Life Sciences), Prof Olwyn Byron (Infection & Immunology), Dr Sonya Taylor (Genetics), Dr Gillian Douce (Bacteriology), Prof Barbara Mable (Animal Biology).

"These women were selected either because some of us had attended their lectures and really enjoyed it or were familiar with their work in their respective fields.

"We had a lovely afternoon. Although not everyone who registered came along - the event had ‘sold out’ long before -  those who made it seemed interested to hear what the speakers had to say and many asked questions. As the afternoon progressed so too did the conversation.

"All of the speakers prepared excellent presentations and expressed a variety of views on a career in life sciences, which we were delighted by.

"What was common for all speakers, though, was the encouragement of students to strive to do the best work possible and find a balance between work and social life, with an emphasis on mental and physical health.

"The event was really inspiring to everyone on the student committee and gave us a lot of thoughts and ideas on how we could expand next year!"

Climate Change STEM event for GirlGuiding Glasgow - Sat 7 March

Brownies STEM event

On Saturday 7 March, we welcomed over 100 Brownies from Girlguiding Glasgow to the Graham Kerr Building to participate in a climate change-themed STEM outreach event organised to celebrate International Women's Day.

The aim was to increase the girls’ awareness of the challenges posed by climate change whilst hopefully inspiring the next generation of women in STEM by encouraging them to think about the impact they could make in the future.

The Brownies undertook a number of challenges prepared by staff and students, encouraging them to consider how animals will survive climate change and how they might build a better future, as well as having the opportunity to speak to presenters.

At the end of the event, everyone received a goody bag and a specially-designed badge to celebrate the event and their achievement, which we hope will have inspired them to consider a future career in science.

Brownies Climate Change patch 2020

School & Student Support Administrator Tracy Wilson said: “With the emphasis firmly on fun and learning, our Athena Swan students worked closely with colleagues to create a range of activities which were met with real enthusiasm by the girls.

"The feedback we received was extremely positive, and it was wonderful to see all the budding scientists in their lab coats really engaging and having fun as they became Climate Change Warrior for the afternoon."


Inspiring Women Coffee Morning - Mon 9 March

SoLS staff Each for Equal pose

In line with the University's overarching theme, the School's annual fundraising coffee morning for International Women’s Day celebrated some of Life Sciences' 'Inspiring Women'.

Ten individuals nominated by staff and students featured in a series of posters that were displayed across the department's social area for the duration of the week.

Those who came along were able to view the posters as well as enjoy a cuppa and some home baking, with all monies raised going to nominated charities Cystic Fibrosis Trust and The Unity Centre

Stewart White reading Inspiring Women posters

School Chief Technician Christine Carr, one of the nominees, said: "I was delighted to both receive this nomination for Inspiring Women and to celebrate the success of all my female colleagues as part of International Women’s Day.

"I consider myself fortunate to work alongside and learn from such positive-thinking individuals and it was fantastic to be able to acknowledge their dedication to work both within and outwith their roles here at the University."