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Positive comments?

Bart Janssen bjanssen at ag.arizona.edu
Fri Aug 15 19:49:39 EST 1997

Debbie Moore wrote:

> Does anyone have anything positive to say about being a woman in the
> biological sciences?  Lots of honest, negative things about being a
> grad
> student, a postdoc, and faculty.  Can someone say some honest,
> positive
> things?  I am not naive, but there must be a resaon we all are here.
> Debbie Moore
> Defending my dissertation in 2 weeks.
> Start new job in 1 week.

Hi Debbie

I'm not a woman in science but the most positive thing I can say about
science is still the reason I became a scientist.  The job isn't quite
what I expected nor is it any thing like ideal, but in spite of that I
wouldn't want to be in any other profession.  Why?? Well...

I once read a series of short stories by Isaac Asimov, these were
mystery stories not science fiction.  The setting was a monthly dinner
meeting between several male friends.  Each month one of the members of
the group (called the black widowers) was charged with bringing a guest
who preferably had a problem or puzzle that the group could solve.
After dinner and before the guest presented the problem the guest was
challenged with one question.....

"How do you justify your existance?"

That's why I became a scientist.  For me, given my abilities and natural
skills, I felt that in science I could in some way contribute (to the
species as a whole).  I still feel that way.  I also don't think there
are many professions that can contribute quite as much as the scientific
profession.  I guess when I no longer believe that I can contribute or
that my profession is contributing then I'll quit.

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