IHPME Celebrates International Women and Girls in Science Day

February 13, 2023

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Saturday marked the 8th annual International Day of Women and Girls in Science. Founded by HRH Princess Dr. Nisreen El-Hashemite, February 11th serves as a day to reflect on women’s health and development, and the work needed to achieve gender parity in science and science education.

From today, I very much hope that I will be called a scientist rather than a woman in science, and to be recognized by my achievements rather than by gender.

~ HRH Princess Dr. Nisreen El-Hashemite

In the spirit of celebrating those who identify as women who work in science, we are pleased to feature two of our very own IHPME scientists for this year’s International Day of Women and Girls in Science.

Dr. Sara Allin

Dr. Allin is one of IHPME’s Associate Professors working within the System Leadership and Innovation (SLI), Health Systems Research (HSR), and Health Administration (MHSc) programs. She also serves as the Director of the North American Observatory on Health Systems and Policies (NAO).

Were there any female scientists you looked up to when you were growing up? 

“My grade 7 science teacher, Mrs. Davis! She was both curious and kind, and she seemed to find joy in her work which created the best kind of learning environment.”

What advice do you have for those who identify as young women who are thinking of pursuing a science degree?

“You belong! I’m not sure if science labs are still full mostly of men but in the 1990s, this was the case, and it can be intimidating. And find the joy in what you do.”

Dr. Kuan Liu

Dr. Liu is an Assistant Professor at IHPME and is affiliated with several of our programs including Clinical Epidemiology and Health Care Research (CEHCR), Health Systems Research (HSR), Health Economics, and Health Services Outcomes and Evaluation. She is also cross appointed with the Division of Biostatistics at DLSPH.

Were there any female scientists you looked up to when you were growing up? 

“My mother has been my inspiration and role model since I was little. She was the first in her family to attend university, and she has been my biggest supporter and cheerleader throughout my life. She taught me to be kind, compassionate, and to make decisions with integrity.”

What advice do you have for those who identify as young women who are thinking of pursuing a science degree?

“My advice for young women who are thinking of pursuing a science degree is to not worry about stereotypes and breaking norms, and not be afraid of failure. Speak up when you have ideas to share and be part of the conversation when given the opportunity. It’s important to believe in yourself—your thoughts and views are valuable. Studying science is both exhilarating and difficult. There are countless occasions throughout my study when I have struggled to understand new concepts and theories, gotten stuck working on a piece of code, or run into failed simulation results (the list goes on). It’s all part of the process of learning and working in science. Make sure to celebrate all milestones, whether in school or in life!”

Learn more about this event and movement.

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Marielle Boutin
Email Address: ihpme.communications@​utoronto.ca

Manages all IHPME-wide communications and marketing initiatives, including events and announcements.