As a woman of color, you may have experienced the feeling of being the only one in the room. This is especially true in STEM fields where women of color are underrepresented and underappreciated.
But don't let that discourage you from pursuing what's out there, especially if your passion and purpose lie in fields where seeing women of color is uncommon.
It's time to break some barriers and make our marks known, and this blog will show you how in the STEM fields.
Many barriers prevent women of color from dominating STEM fields. One of the biggest barriers, and the most impactful, is the lack of representation.
When you don't see people who look like you in positions of power, it's hard to imagine yourself in that role. This lack of representation can also lead to feelings of isolation and imposter syndrome, which can hold women of color back from pursuing careers in STEM.
Another barrier is the lack of access to resources and opportunities. Many women of color don't have access to the same educational and career opportunities as their counterparts.
This can be due to various factors, including systemic racism and discrimination, which are conversations that need to be had to fix this issue.
For example, studies have shown that women of color are more likely to experience bias and discrimination in the workplace, which can limit their career growth and opportunities. But when we open our minds, that’s when the ceiling begins to crack.
Breaking the Barriers
So, how do we break these barriers if we want more women of color in positions of power in STEM? It'll require serious work, but we have the power and the abilities to get there.
First, we must create more opportunities for women of color in STEM fields. This can be done through mentorship programs, internships, and scholarships, all needed to show them that opportunities are theirs for the taking.
By providing women of color with access to these resources, we also can help level the playing field and give them a greater chance of success.
We also need to advocate for diversity and inclusion in the workplace. This means more than just placing women of color anywhere in a company and calling it ‘diversity.’ This, moreover, means holding companies accountable for their hiring practices and creating a welcoming environment for all employees.
Companies can do this by implementing diversity and inclusion training, creating affinity groups for underrepresented employees, and ensuring that diverse candidates are given equal consideration for job opportunities.
But perhaps one of the most significant ways to break barriers in these fields is to celebrate the successes of women of color in STEM fields already. By highlighting the achievements of women of color, we can inspire the next generation of young girls to pursue careers in STEM without pushback.
This can be done through media coverage, public speaking events, and social media campaigns. Social media coverage, though, is the best place to achieve this goal and reach multiple audiences, including a multitude of women of color.
Women of color have the potential to the make a massive impact in STEM fields. But first, we must break the glass ceiling holding us back from achieving greatness.
It's time to break the barriers that prevent us from shining in these industries. By creating more opportunities, advocating for diversity and inclusion, and celebrating our successes, we can pave the way for future generations of women of color in STEM.
Let's make our mark known! Remember, we are capable, talented and deserve our seat at the table.
To learn more about how Odihi is making missions like these a reality, click here to check out our website for great resources, events, and more.