Shining a light on women in science

Professor Karen Reynolds, MDRI Director, was featured on Flinders Victoria Square building, during Science Week.
Professor Karen Reynolds, MDRI Director, was featured on Flinders Victoria Square building, during Science Week.

The faces of high-achieving women in science – including our own director, Professor Karen Reynolds – beamed down on Victoria Square as part of the Flinders Illuminating the Face of STEM campaign.

The campaign, a collaboration between Flinders University’s STEM Women Branching Out group and SA projection art company Illuminart, aimed to shine a light on the bright achievements of female scientists, and included a special architectural illumination during Science Week.

The Flinders Victoria Square building was used in the major illumination display on 19 August, featuring illustrations of women who have made notable contributions in STEM disciplines (science, technology, engineering, mathematics).

Flinders Distinguished Professor and MDRI Director Karen Reynolds, SA Chief Scientist Dr Leanna Read, Flinders nanotech Professor Amanda Ellis, mathematician Professor Cheryl Praeger and well-known SA physicist Professor Tanya Monro were among those profiled in the campaign.

Professor Reynolds was delighted to be involved in the project.

“It was quite a thrill to see myself up in 50-foot lights – after all, I’m a scientist, not an actress,” she joked.

“More seriously though, this project aims to break down the stereotype that STEM careers are mainly for men.

“I have an extremely satisfying career, and I’m all for any project which helps encourage young women to consider working in STEM fields. It was an honour to be invited.”

STEM Women Branching Out Members also staged random mobile projections in Rundle Mall and around Adelaide, wearing lab coats and digital animations to tell stories about their research and career paths in the sciences.

The Illuminating the Face of STEM campaign received a $15,000 New Initiatives National Science Week SA grant and was supported by the Australian Government’s Inspiring Australia (Science in Public) program as part of National Science Week.

The project also received assistance from the office of Flinders University’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Robert Saint, the Australian Institute of Nuclear Science and Engineering, and the Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) Athena SWAN project.

Posted in

Leave a Reply