What Does a Super Cool Scientist Look Like? We've Got Answers!
By Sara MacSorley, author of Super Cool Scientists
This year I became an author and a small business owner with the Super Cool Scientists project. Originally, I set out to be a marine science researcher. My degree is in marine biology and I was sure that was my career path until I realized I didn’t like research. After that, I had some amazing mentors who helped me get into science outreach and communication work that eventually let do working in higher education administration.
STEM careers are exciting, challenging, usually well-paying, and lead to discoveries that help people and our planet. Though we’ve seen improvement, women and people of color are still underrepresented in STEM careers. Diversity is key to offering different perspectives and experiences to solving problems. One of the core components of all STEM work is problem solving.
The Super Cool Scientists project is my contribution to help make STEM more inclusive. I want to recognize the amazing women currently doing this work, thereby elevating the narratives of what scientists can look like. The major goal is also to inspire young people to see themselves in these careers. Representation matters. It was super important to me to make sure the book included a diverse range of science careers and also a diverse cohort of individual women. I want everyone who picks up the book to be able to relate to at least one illustration or story.
When I think about what advice I’d give for success, I hear my grandmother. “Put on your big girl panties and just do it.” This whole process has been navigating uncharted waters for me. I had done a lot of great things in my career but I had never written a book, run a crowdfunding campaign, or started a business. I knew it was a project that needed to happen and that I had the goods to do it myself. So I just got started. I did a lot of research, asked a lot of questions, and surrounded myself with my tribe of people who raise me up and remind me that I too am super cool.