Breaking Boundaries: Women at the Forefront of STEM

Charu Mehrotra
5 min readApr 12, 2023

Men have traditionally held the majority of positions in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). But over time, women have been breaking boundaries and achieving important advancements in the industry. In numerous STEM disciplines, including medical, engineering, and computer science, women are now making ground-breaking advances. These female role models are paving the way and demonstrating that gender should never be a hindrance to seeking a profession in STEM. Some of the ladies who are leading the way in STEM will be highlighted in this article.

Women Breaking Boundaries

Dr. Jane C. Wright blazed new paths in the medical industry. Dr. Wright, who was born in 1919, was the first African American woman to complete medical school. She was also the first woman to hold the position of department director at a renowned cancer study institute. Dr. Wright was a pioneer in cancer chemotherapy , and thanks to her efforts, numerous lives have been spared by medicines. Dr. Patricia Bath is another lady who has made a major impact on medicine. The first African American woman to be granted a patent for a medicinal innovation was Dr. Bath. She invented a technique for removing cataracts with a laser, which transformed eye surgery. In the area of telemedicine, which employs technology to deliver healthcare to patients in distant locations, Dr. Bath was a pioneer.

Another profession that has historically been controlled by males is engineering. But female pioneers in this area, like Dr. Mae Jemison, are dismantling stereotypes and establishing themselves. The first African American lady to hold the position of astronaut was Dr. Jemison. She is an architect and a doctor as well. Many young women have been motivated to seek STEM professions by Dr. Jemison’s ground-breaking accomplishments. Dr. Ayanna Howard is another lady who has distinguished herself in engineering.

Roboticist Dr. Howard has contributed to numerous NASA projects. She teaches automation at the Georgia Institute of Technology as well. The goal of Dr. Howard’s study is to create robots that can communicate with people more naturally. Her work has the ability to completely change how we deal with robots on a regular basis.

Another field where women are making substantial progress is computer science. Computer science was pioneered by Dr. Grace Hopper. She created the first translator, a software that converts computer code into commands that are understandable by machines. Modern computer languages are a direct result of Dr. Hopper’s efforts. Additionally, she was the first female recipient of the National Medal of Technology. Dr. Fei-Fei Li is another lady who has made a major impact on computer science.

Dr. Li is an expert in artificial intelligence and a computer physicist. (AI). She has worked on numerous AI initiatives, including the creation of ImageNet, a collection of millions of labelled pictures that has been used to train AI models. She is the co-director of the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered AI. The work of Dr. Li has the ability to change a number of sectors, including healthcare and transit.

Obstacles for Women in STEM

Even though women have made great strides in STEM fields, they still encounter numerous obstacles. The lack of participation is one of the greatest issues. Young girls who are interested in a future in STEM may be discouraged by the fact that women are still overwhelmingly lacking in these disciplines. Women only make up 28% of the STEM field, according to a National Science Foundation study. The gender wage disparity is one more issue that women deal with. Even when they have the same credentials and expertise, women in STEM areas frequently receive lower pay than their male peers. This can hinder women’s professional advancement and serve as a dissuader for women who are thinking about a future in STEM.

The absence of mentoring and assistance is another problem that women in STEM must deal with. Many women claim to feel alone in their jobs and to have no access to mentors who can help them negotiate the difficulties of their profession. As a result, women may find it challenging to progress in their jobs and may have fewer chances for development and advancement. Finally, prejudice and discrimination against women in STEM fields is a problem. Being regarded seriously in the workplace can be challenging for women because they are frequently the target of assumptions and biases. Women tech jobs frequently face particular difficulties like discrimination on the basis of their gender, color, or nationality.

Getting past the obstacles

Despite the difficulties that women in STEM experience, there are methods to get around them and foster a more welcoming and encouraging atmosphere for them. Increasing chances for mentoring and assistance is one strategy. Women are more likely to thrive in their jobs and feel more encouraged at work if they have access to mentors and sponsors. More networking and collaboration possibilities are one more method to encourage variety and equality in STEM. We can help to create a community of support and inspiration for women in STEM disciplines by putting them in touch with one another.

This can serve to lower barriers and advance diversity in the industry. Promoting knowledge and instruction about the value of variety and inclusion in STEM fields is also crucial. We can inspire more people to move and work toward fostering a more inclusive and supportive atmosphere for all by bringing attention to the problems that women experience in the workplace.

In conclusion, women have made important advancements to STEM disciplines, but they still struggle with issues like bias, mentoring, and inclusion. To build a more equitable and creative future, it is crucial to address these issues and promote variety and equality in STEM disciplines.

Lena Heller

Also read: A True Inspiration to Women in Science- Dr Tanja Bagar

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Originally published at https://www.womenlines.com on April 12, 2023.

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Charu Mehrotra

Founder e-Magazine Womenlines, Entrepreneur,Unshakable Optimist. Subscribe www.womenlines.com