New Publication Features Women in Science Careers at the National Institutes of Health
The publication models the success stories of women in science to encourage aspiring science students as well as serving as a guide to the diversity of staff and research areas at the NIH for both students as well as for established scientists.
Akinso: The Office of Research on Women’s Health has sponsored a new book featuring the achievements of accomplished women in science at the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Vivian Pinn, ORWH’s Director, says this book is meant to highlight examples of the variety of roles, positions and contributions of doctoral-level women across the NIH.
Pinn: There are so many accomplished women at the NIH both in senior levels as well as in junior positions all enjoying or excelling in science that we wanted to put together not a directory or scientist but just a publication that could feature the accomplishments of many of the women here and to talk a little bit about how they approached their careers, what they have done, what their doing, and how they combine that with their personal lives just as an inspiration to young boys and girls, and men and women, who may be considering careers in science and don't know role models.
Akinso: The book, "Women in Science at the National Institutes of Health 2007-2008" celebrates careers and accomplishments of 289 talented female scientists and administrators who are part of the NIH community. Each NIH Institute, Center and Office recommended up 15 doctoral-level women to be featured in the publication.
Pinn: This features women from across the spectrum from those who are biostatisticians to those who are institute leaders, those who are in administration, and those who are in basically in the laboratory working on their experiments and their research on a daily basis. We ask them to tell us a little bit about their educational background and about the kind of work they’re doing. And then, what I think is most important, their personal stories, what they would like to share.
Akinso: The publication gives readers the opportunity to learn about the different paths each woman has taken and be encouraged by the women’s personal stories. Dr. Pinn hopes this book influences or brings excitement to young men and women pursuing careers in science.
Pinn: We wanted to show that women can be successful in scientific careers in a variety of positions and a variety of ways to pursue those positions. That they can advance to leadership positions, demonstrating how we’ve had a great increase in the number of women who are leaders here at the NIH over the past 15-20 years. And really to create excitement not just for young girls but for young men and women who are considering careers in science to know that they can do it—hear examples of some who have. You can see how some of these women in the book have overcome various barriers and yet they enjoy what their doing and they have pride in what they are doing and that’s what we wanted to accomplish.
Akinso: The publication honors the exemplary leadership of Dr. Ruth Kirschestein, the first woman to serve as a director of a NIH institute, who among her many accomplishments established the ORWH in 1990. Dr. Kirschstein, who spent more than 50 years as a civil servant, died in October 2009. To download an electronic copy or order a hard copy of the book, visit http://orwh.od.nih.gov/. This is Wally Akinso at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland.
About This Audio Report
Reporter: Wally Akinso
Sound Bite: Dr. Vivian Pinn
Topic: Women in Science