24 January 2018: As a pilot member of Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE), the University of Canberra has joined forces with a number of other leading universities and organisations to ensure the talents of women are better represented in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and medicine (STEMM) education and careers. Over eight months, UC and its partners contributed energy, ideas, and action to ensure STEMM-related fields benefit from diverse minds, diverse knowledge and skill-sets, and diverse human networks to respond quickly, intelligently and in impactful ways.
This project, a collaboration between the various institutions, resulted in the cross-institutional video ‘STEMM’s got talent, but nearly lost it’, which captures the stories of successful individuals who have pursued careers in science; how at times, they nearly turned away from STEMM, and how a range of obstacles were overcome along the way.
It also explores their institutions’ role in unlocking and harnessing the potential of the human mind, regardless of gender. The participating institutions are the University of Canberra (UC), The Australian National University (ANU), CSIRO, University of South Australia (UniSA), University of Sydney, and Cambridge.
The universities' leaders have expressed their commitment to the effort:
University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Deep Saini: “The University of Canberra has long been committed to developing and fostering an environment that promotes gender equality. Through this culture, we have seen first-hand the positive impact a diverse workforce has on our capacity to facilitate transformative learning and research, particularly in STEMM. It’s important that we continue to unlock and harness the potential of the human mind for the benefit of our community and beyond, and gender should not stand in the way of this. Not now, not ever.”
The film features UC's Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) Professor Frances Shannon epigenetics and immunology scientist, physicist Professor Tanya Monro (University of South Australia), early-career researcher and biochemist Dr Anna El-Tahchy (CSIRO Agriculture and Food), mathematician Professor Nalini Joshi (University of Sydney), Dr John Rolley researcher in nursing and clinical medicine (University of Canberra), Professor Emily Banks epidemiologist and public health physician (ANU), and Dame Ottoline Leyser, Plant developmental biologist and Director of the Sainsbury Laboratory (Cambridge).
Laboratory Manager at the Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics at the University of Canberra, Jade Redfern has represented the University in the task force.