Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Meet the CSWA: Maria Patterson


In our newest series on the Women in Astronomy blog, we'd like to introduce our readers to the Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy.  After earning a PhD in astronomy, Maria Patterson spent several years at the University of Chicago’s Center for Data Intensive Science, where she worked on cloud-based pipelines for automated analysis of NASA satellite imagery and architectures for interdisciplinary scientific clouds or “data commons”.  During the initial stages for NOAA’s move to the cloud with the Big Data Project, Maria worked with the Open Commons Consortium to ensure the interests of the academic and scientific community were represented.  She is currently a Research Scientist at the University of Washington, working on scientific data pipelines for managing streams of real-time data from large-scale astronomy projects, including the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF) and the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST).  Maria is passionate about open science, diversity in computing, and making everyone’s life easier through tech and was recently named a modern hidden figure in STEM in PepsiCo and 21st Century Fox’s “Search for Hidden Figures."

Describe the first time you made a personal connection with the planets and stars?

I’m not sure when the very first time was - I grew up with a constant close connection to all things space because my Dad has worked at NASA all my life.  I have pictures of me when I was little, dressed up as an astronaut, and we had a huge space shuttle mural on the wall.  My brother and I would go with my Dad to work, and I spent a lot of time at the visitor’s center at NASA Glenn (then Lewis) Research Center just staring at the piece of the moon and all of the exhibits on display.  I remember one time in particular being in the car with my Dad on a road trip when he was telling me about gamma ray bursts, and I was mesmerized.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Meet the CSWA: Angela Speck

In our newest series on the Women in Astronomy blog, we'd like to introduce our readers to the Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy.  Angela Speck was named after the iconic Angela Davis, she likes bright colors, is a nerd at heart, and has wanted to be an astronaut since she was 5 years old. Originally from Yorkshire (England) she went to college in London where she was able to pursue her childhood dreams by majoring in astrophysics. After a brief stint as a r&d technician in a Lancashire company run by crazy new-age hippies, she returned to London and completed a PhD in astronomy. Now the Director of Astronomy at Mizzou (University of Missouri), she continues to research and teach astrophysics and to share her passion for all things extra-terrestrial. Her research into the nature of stardust is apt for a woman called A Speck.

Describe the first time you made a personal connection with the planets and stars?

I decided that I wanted to be an astronaut when I was five. This was the year my dad started college; I regularly lectured his (PoliSci) classmates on the heavens and why the move the way they do.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Cross-Post: American Physical Society Fellers




On October 17, Kerstin Nordstrom posted a blog about the relative representation of women among American Physical Society Fellows on the scienceprose.worldpress.com blog.  Unsurprisingly, women are underrepresented.  

The article opens with: "Are women underepresented as APS fellows? Yes. Is it anyone’s fault? It’s complicated. Is there anything simple that can be done? YES! Any member of APS can nominate a potential fellow starting early in the calendar year, with deadline varying by unit."

For the complete article, please go to:

https://scienceprose.wordpress.com/2017/10/15/american-physical-society-fellers/


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Yet Another Potential Roadblock for Women's Career Advancement

                              Image credit: Anna and Elena Balbusso 


On October 9th an article was released in Science Daily reporting that a study published in "Sex Roles" entitled "Dads are often having fun while moms work around the house."   As noted in the summary, "For the first time, researchers have evidence of exactly what dads are doing while moms are taking care of housework or tending to their child. The results will be disappointing for those who expected more gender equity in modern society."  

Citation:  Ohio State University. "Dads are often having fun while moms work around the house: Study first to show how couples spend time minute-by-minute." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 October 2017. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/10/171009084345.htm>. 

For the complete article, see: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/10/171009084345.htm

The original Ohio State Press Release can be found here:
https://news.osu.edu/news/2017/10/09/what-men-do/