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The Scientist Spotlights Initiative

The Scientist Spotlights Initiative empowers middle/high school, college, and university science educators to implement inclusive curricula that help ALL students see themselves in science. We provide access to easy-to- implement assignments/activities that link course content to the stories of counter-stereotypical scientists. About Us +

From Scientist Spotlights, I learned how these scientists made a difference in their communities and even the world. It taught me to persevere, be passionate about my work, value my education, and never give up.

From Scientist Spotlights, I learned how these scientists made a difference in their communities and even the world. It taught me to persevere, be passionate about my work, value my education, and never give up.

College Student
Scientist Spotlights gave me a sense of hope for women in science. In high school, I only learned about one, but here I learned about many women in science. I’m encouraged to keep pursuing my own aspirations in science.

Scientist Spotlights gave me a sense of hope for women in science. In high school, I only learned about one, but here I learned about many women in science. I’m encouraged to keep pursuing my own aspirations in science.

College Student
Scientist Spotlights showed me scientists come in many races, genders, and sexual identities. Hearing how they impacted the world but didn’t have confidence at first, inspires me to never give up my love for science.

Scientist Spotlights showed me scientists come in many races, genders, and sexual identities. Hearing how they impacted the world but didn’t have confidence at first, inspires me to never give up my love for science.

College Student
I never knew any scientists except for famous ones. In Scientist Spotlights, I learned about others I’d never heard of. What shocked me was their past, how far they got, and how I have the potential to be one of them someday.

I never knew any scientists except for famous ones. In Scientist Spotlights, I learned about others I’d never heard of. What shocked me was their past, how far they got, and how I have the potential to be one of them someday.

College Student
I especially enjoyed scientists in the Spotlights, determined people who wanted to make a difference. No matter how many obstacles faced, they never gave up. As someone starting out, it helps to know obstacles are normal.

I especially enjoyed scientists in the Spotlights, determined people who wanted to make a difference. No matter how many obstacles faced, they never gave up. As someone starting out, it helps to know obstacles are normal.

College Student
This course has been life changing. I remember being asked “How many of you see yourself as a biologist?” and not raising my hand. This class changed that and made me realize how capable I really am of being a scientist.

This course has been life changing. I remember being asked “How many of you see yourself as a biologist?” and not raising my hand. This class changed that and made me realize how capable I really am of being a scientist.

College Student
I learned that I felt I wouldn’t belong because I didn’t recognize my place in the conversation. This course taught me that I do have a place in science, there are people just like me, and their voices can be heard, too.

I learned that I felt I wouldn’t belong because I didn’t recognize my place in the conversation. This course taught me that I do have a place in science, there are people just like me, and their voices can be heard, too.

College Student
I learned that I’m not alone. There are many in science that are also minorities. We are all here to boost each other to succeed. When times get tough, I will always remember I am a scientist, and I will change the world.

I learned that I’m not alone. There are many in science that are also minorities. We are all here to boost each other to succeed. When times get tough, I will always remember I am a scientist, and I will change the world.

College Student
Before this course I had heard very little about women scientists, especially African-American women. I liked how this course gave them voice. How they struggled to get where they got in science is inspiring.

Before this course I had heard very little about women scientists, especially African-American women. I liked how this course gave them voice. How they struggled to get where they got in science is inspiring.

College Student
This class completely transformed my mindset. Scientist Spotlights, a small percentage of homework, shaped my understanding the diversity in science, and instantaneously I included myself within the scientists of tomorrow.

This class completely transformed my mindset. Scientist Spotlights, a small percentage of homework, shaped my understanding the diversity in science, and instantaneously I included myself within the scientists of tomorrow.

College Student
“When we studied scientists of different backgrounds, it was easier for me to feel included. When I see people in science that look like me or overcame struggles I face, I now understand that I do belong.”

“When we studied scientists of different backgrounds, it was easier for me to feel included. When I see people in science that look like me or overcame struggles I face, I now understand that I do belong.”

College Student
These reading spotlights have informed me that there are oceanographers of a variety of backgrounds. As a person of color, I often have felt discouraged from pursuing certain careers or career paths…but I now know that there have been people of color who have and continue to work in this field.

These reading spotlights have informed me that there are oceanographers of a variety of backgrounds. As a person of color, I often have felt discouraged from pursuing certain careers or career paths…but I now know that there have been people of color who have and continue to work in this field.

College Student
I have been told that only those affluent and with connections can make it in science. I was even advised by a school counselor that I would never get far in my life due to my need to work to support me and my mom. Though like Dr. Lopez, those words are discouraging, we just need to cry it out, yell out loud, and get ourselves back together to keep on fighting.

I have been told that only those affluent and with connections can make it in science. I was even advised by a school counselor that I would never get far in my life due to my need to work to support me and my mom. Though like Dr. Lopez, those words are discouraging, we just need to cry it out, yell out loud, and get ourselves back together to keep on fighting.

College Student
Prior to discovering Scientist Spotlights, Sheila had spoken to her students about only a few scientists and realized that they were all men. And when she had presented these scientists’ experiments to the class, she never included information about their personal lives. After integrating Scientist Spotlights into her course, the student response was very positive, convincing Sheila that this is “a very powerful and very important thing to continue doing.”

Prior to discovering Scientist Spotlights, Sheila had spoken to her students about only a few scientists and realized that they were all men. And when she had presented these scientists’ experiments to the class, she never included information about their personal lives. After integrating Scientist Spotlights into her course, the student response was very positive, convincing Sheila that this is “a very powerful and very important thing to continue doing.”

High School Teacher
I’m a doctoral student, but before Scientist Spotlights, I had never seen a fellow Filipino scientist in any of my years of science courses. How could that be possible?! I’m really proud to now feature scientists like this in my own classes.

I’m a doctoral student, but before Scientist Spotlights, I had never seen a fellow Filipino scientist in any of my years of science courses. How could that be possible?! I’m really proud to now feature scientists like this in my own classes.

University Instructor
I am thoroughly convinced that helping students identify with scientists of many different backgrounds really is the way to encourage continued interest in STEM for a huge diverse student population.

I am thoroughly convinced that helping students identify with scientists of many different backgrounds really is the way to encourage continued interest in STEM for a huge diverse student population.

High School Teacher
To be honest, I felt so connected to this scientist learning English as a second language. I tried my best to study English and this scientist did the same thing too. She is amazing and achieved what her family thought that she could never do.

To be honest, I felt so connected to this scientist learning English as a second language. I tried my best to study English and this scientist did the same thing too. She is amazing and achieved what her family thought that she could never do.

College Student
WOW WOW WOW! The article on this scientist and how she got to where she is today is truly inspiring to me. It reminds me so much of my grandparents and how many non-U.S. citizens deal with so much stigma and profiling and doubt, but continue to keep their head down and charge forward to break barriers and make something out of themselves.

WOW WOW WOW! The article on this scientist and how she got to where she is today is truly inspiring to me. It reminds me so much of my grandparents and how many non-U.S. citizens deal with so much stigma and profiling and doubt, but continue to keep their head down and charge forward to break barriers and make something out of themselves.

College Student
I was really interested in this scientist’s story mainly because my family members and I suffer from dyslexia as well, and to read her story is very inspiring. I liked that she never gave up, I know having a learning disability can be so discouraging at times and sometimes you want to just give up. Again it just goes to show you that the type of people who do science really do have a passion for it.

I was really interested in this scientist’s story mainly because my family members and I suffer from dyslexia as well, and to read her story is very inspiring. I liked that she never gave up, I know having a learning disability can be so discouraging at times and sometimes you want to just give up. Again it just goes to show you that the type of people who do science really do have a passion for it.

College Student
From what I have gathered from our scientist spotlights these articles show me more and more that to study science you should question everything and be curious about thinking outside of the box. Do not be afraid to take chances and get things wrong a time or two because usually the most discoveries come from making risky decisions or choices.

From what I have gathered from our scientist spotlights these articles show me more and more that to study science you should question everything and be curious about thinking outside of the box. Do not be afraid to take chances and get things wrong a time or two because usually the most discoveries come from making risky decisions or choices.

College Student
Coming from a background where the struggles of parents not having much of a school education and just a tough school upbringing is a challenge, I can relate because my parents came from Mexico and didn’t even finish middle school when they came to the U.S, and barely even knew English.

Coming from a background where the struggles of parents not having much of a school education and just a tough school upbringing is a challenge, I can relate because my parents came from Mexico and didn’t even finish middle school when they came to the U.S, and barely even knew English.

College Student
With her background as a first generation Asian-American with refugee parents with limited education, I am able to relate to her experience of culture shock as she entered college.

With her background as a first generation Asian-American with refugee parents with limited education, I am able to relate to her experience of culture shock as she entered college.

College Student
This shows that Rose is a resilient person and I feel after reading all these science spotlights most scientists are super resilient or do not let the odds against them stop them.

This shows that Rose is a resilient person and I feel after reading all these science spotlights most scientists are super resilient or do not let the odds against them stop them.

College Student