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花旗国的半边天

An Exploration of Women's Issues

 
 
 

日志

 
 

女宇航员的模范作用 (Female Astronauts Lead the Way for Other Women)  

2011-06-14 11:51:34|  分类: 默认分类 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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女宇航员的模范作用 (Female Astronauts Lead the Way for Other Women) - 美国马尾妹 - 花旗国的半边天
 几个星期前在“性别教育”一文中,我曾提到最近的一个女性运动,它 鼓励年轻女性勇敢追求在STEM(科学,技术,工程设计和数学)领域的职业。这些领域过去被认为由男性 主导,目前这种趋势仍然有待扭转。尽管现代的妇女学历总体来说比男性更高,但是在数学,工程设计,物理和电脑技术领域,获 得本科学位的女性仍然在百分之五十以下。凭借其社会声望,女宇航员有其本身特殊的条件帮助打破这些领域上的性别不平衡。她 们在传统由男性主导的空间探测领域中取得了个人成就,为年轻女性树立了优秀的典范。许多的女宇航员已经意识到这点,已经利用这个优势 来鼓励女学生们跟随她们的足迹,成为STEM域的巾帼。

      Several weeks ago in the post “Gendered Education,” I wrote about a recent movement to encourage girls and young women to pursue careers in “STEM” fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).  These fields have been traditionally dominated by men and the success of efforts to reverse this trend has been limited.  Although women currently earn more higher education degrees than men overall, they still earn less than half of all bachelor’s degrees in mathematics, engineering, and physical and computer sciences.  Because of their public prominence, female astronauts have a unique ability to aid the movement to end this gender imbalance. Their own achievements in the traditionally male-dominated field of space exploration make them excellent role models for young women.  Many female astronauts have already recognized the influence this gives them and are using it to encourage female students to follow in their footsteps.


      One such astronaut is Sally Ride, who became the first American woman in space in 1983.  While an active astronaut, Ride participated in multiple missions, served as a mission specialist, and performed as an on-orbit capsule communicator, among other accomplishments.  These accomplishments gave her a degree of public prominence that has since helped her to foster interest in the sciences among young students, particularly young female students.  In 2001, she founded Sally Ride Science, an educational company that seeks to motivate girls and young women to pursue STEM careers by developing entertaining science programs and publications for elementary and middle school aged students.  She has also written several children's books about space, presenting scientific information in a fun and accessible fashion.  Because of these efforts, Ride is not only a model for success to be admired from afar, but is also actively engaged in encouraging students to aim for success themselves.


      Recently, NASA, the American government agency in charge of space exploration, has begun to follow Ride's lead by more actively encouraging women to join its ranks.  This past year, it launched a website (women.nasa.gov) devoted to highlighting women's contributions to the agency.  According to the website itself, its purpose is to “celebrate women from across the agency who contribute to NASA's mission in different ways” and in doing so “inspire girls to reach for the stars and explore the myriad of opportunities available to them through pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics”.  The site's developers clearly recognized the power of positive role models; the site features the stories of numerous female NASA employees who overcame great obstacles to achieve their present success.  In addition to spotlighting astronauts like Ride, it features stories about women performing other roles within the agency as engineers, aircraft flight researchers, flight directors for mission control, information technology specialists, and many other positions.  The variety of roles performed by women featured on the site helps to demonstrate to girls the wide array of possibilities open to them within the agency and within STEM fields in general.  For girls who are inspired enough to seriously consider a career like those of the women featured, the site contains more specific information on NASA careers.


      Hopefully, the recent efforts of astronauts and NASA itself to encourage girls to pursue STEM careers will reenergize the movement to reverse the gender imbalance in these fields.  Because of the large degree of public interest in space exploration, their efforts may be able to achieve more success than the movement has yet experienced. 
 


To learn more about women and space exploration, visit: women.nasa.gov 
 


讨论:对于女科学爱好者来说,你认为谁是她们的模范?Discussion Question: Who do you regard as a good role model for women interested in science?)


Sources:

United States. U.S. Department of Commerce and the Executive Office of the President. Women in 
     America: Indicators of Social and Economic Well-Being. 2011. PDF file. 
"Women in Space." NASA History Program Office. NASA, n.d. Web. 13 June 2011. 
     <http://history.nasa.gov/women.html>. 

Women@NASA. NASA, n.d. Web. 13 June 2011. <http://women.nasa.gov/>.

Image:

arcweb.archives.gov/arc/action/ExternalIdSearch?id=541940. Author: U.S. Information Agency

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