WITSWORDS January 2017
January 2017

In This Issue

Website Update

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WITS 2017 Event #1 The Imposter Syndrome
Thanks to Pauline Sargent aka Digiwomen for her excellent workshop on the Imposter Syndrome on 17 January 2017 at the Paccar Theatre Science Gallery Dublin. Thanks to all who attended, it was a great turnout. Read about the workshop here, thanks to Jane O'Hara for the write up. Find out more about the Imposter Syndrome here

WITS Update

Welcome to WITSWORDS January 2017

WITS Update
WITS has had a busy January. The 2017 Executive met on 10 January and had an excellent meeting planning for the year. The first WITS 2017 event was on 17 January in Dublin, read about it above. Thank you if you have renewed your WITS membership for 2017, membership is available here.

We have an events survey with a draw for two tickets to the Dublin Tech Summit. The survey closes next Thursday 2 February. Thank you if you have taken the survey and click here to take it. This will help us plan events for Dublin, Galway, Sligo and Cork this year and other events around the country

We are delighted to introduce Margaret Jordan and Magaly Mora who are taking the lead for WITS in Cork. Thank you both.

WITS Policy Subcommittee and National Women's Strategy Submission January 2017
The WITS Policy subcommittee led by Triona O'Connell is preparing the WITS submission to the National Women's Strategy 2017-2020 due on 31 January. Mary Carroll and Marion Palmer attended the public consultation on 18 January in Dublin. The WITS submission is based on the WITS Action Manifesto approved by members at the AGM and will be available on the WITS website.

WITS 2016 Women in STEM report.
The 2016 Women in STEM report  presented at the AGM  is here.

WITS was at:
  • 16 January #weAREhere event, The Liquor Rooms Dublin.
  • 18 January National Women's Strategy Public Consultation Gender Equality Unit Department of Justice and Equality.

Dates for your diary - WITS events February 2017

Wednesday 22 February 2017 7.15 pm  Distillery House, North Mall, Sunday’s Well, Cork
Science Communication: Why and How.
This is the next Cork event with Bettie Higgs and Niamh Kavanagh as speakers. Find out more and book your place here.

There will be a Dublin event in February - keep an eye on the WITS website and there will an email as well.


Irish Research Council update
Irish Research Council nowrequires colleges to address gender equity to get research funding. More here. Athena Swan gender equality accreditation will be required by the end of 2019.

European Science Foundation launches Science Connect as a support to science across Europe. It looks worth exploring if you are involved in research.

UCD Science Events 2017
Click here to see the UCD Science events for third level students, graduates and second level students. Congratulations to College of Science UCD for a comprehensive outreach programme.

Women in STEM in the news
Read about known and forgotten women in STEM.
  • Astronomer Vera Rubin has died and is celebrated with other women scientists here.
  • Read about a forgotten women scientist here. Maria Sibylla Merian, a botanist, naturalist, entomologist and an artist.
  • Dava Sobel's book on Harvard astronomers The Glass Universe has been published. Read about it here.
Women: Tech exhibit Intel Leixlip
Seen on Twitter: Intel has a collection of 28 portraits of women in technology to be exhibited on their Leixlip campus. See here and here. Congratulations and we look forward to hearing more about it.

Science Communication
Mary Mulvihill Memorial Award
Calling students interested in science journalism and the role of women. Entries for the Mary Mulvihill Memorial Award, prize €2000 are due on 3 March 2017. For more information click here. Read about the award here. You can find out more on Wednesday 8 February at 11.30 am at the IFI Dublin with science journalist Claire O'Connell as special guest.

Futureproof is the Newstalk Science show presented by Joanthan McCrea on Saturdays between 12 noon and 1 pm. They are seeking an intern
to join the t
eam to bring great science to the radio. You will learn a lot. It is unpaid. Email the show here.

Calling engineers for the I am an engineer programme Engineers Week 6-17 March 2017

I'm an Engineer Ireland is an online STEM outreach competition happening for this year’s Engineers Week 6-17 March 2017 when engineers will connect with curious school students across the country, answering questions about their work on the themes of Energy, Health and Space, and members of WITS are invited to apply to take part. For more info see I'm an Engineer Ireland or contact or call +44 1225 326 892.

Climate change
WITS members may be interested in this EU report on climate change - read about it here.

TalentSpace -Ludgate Hub West Cork
Are you in Cork or would like to get work in West Cork? Have a look at this platform. You may be interested in registering. 

Dates for your diary

Gender News

European Gender News
News of studies by EIGE into gender equality in the classroom here. There's an excellent definition of gender stereotypes and news of planned studies including one on gender segregation in tertiary education which will be published in November 2017. WITS will be watching out for this.

Gender Scan Digest 2016, read it here. Thanks to Claudine Schmuck of Global Contact for this valuable information.

UCD Women in Leadership conference Thursday 9 February. There is an interesting Women in STEM panel. More information and tickets available here.

NWCI news
Ireland has to report to the UN on the elimination of discrimination against women. WITS attended the Department of Justice and Equality's consultation last July. We await the national report. In the meantime you might be interested in the NWCI's shadow report here.

News and Items of Interest
  • International Journal of Gender, Science and Technology latest issue is here. Some interesting articles including a New Zealand study on attracting girls to programming and the presentation of women scientists in CSI.
  • Implicit bias in the engineering workplace. Read about this here.
  • Blog post for students about harassment by a lecturer. Read it here.
Inspirefest2017 is on from 6-8 July 2017. 
Tickets available.

Members' News

Ally workshop at Kats Conf Friday 17 February 17:30
Want to find out what an Ally is and how to support women in the workplace? This workshop run by Coding Grace and Workday may be of interest. Book a place here. Would you be interested in facilitating the group sessions? Email WITS Vice Chair Vicky Twomey Lee aka Coding Grace to find out more. 

Computer science students and graduates - please help my research

Hi all, my name is Ailish McCarthy and I am a final year student of Computer Science and Language in Trinity College Dublin. Would you help with my final year research into a peer support network for women undergraduates of computer science and related degrees. If you are a women student or a former student of computing related degrees would you take a short survey here please?


I am also looking for some former students to interview regarding their experience as an undergraduate. The interview shouldn't take more than about 30 minutes and ideally the person would be in, or be able to travel to Dublin City. If you'd be interested, or if you know somebody else that you think would like to share their thoughts/experiences, I'd be very happy to send on more information. You can contact me at


Accenture #womenonwalls campaign
Great video of the 7 December launch event here. It captures the essence of the wonderful celebration of women in STEM.

Member Profiles
Don't forget to think about sending your profile to feature on the WITS website. Email WITS with a photograph and between 50 and 100 words about yourself.

We welcome news from members. If you have events, initiatives or just something you think of interest to WITS members please email WITS before the AGM on 10 December 2016 and we'll include it in the next newsletter.

Hidden Figures film screenings

WITS been offered pairs of tickets to preview screenings of Hidden Figures by 20th Century Fox. The dates are as follows:

DUBLIN – Wednesday  8/02/2017 – movies@, Dundrum @ 6.20pm

CORK – Thursday 09/02/2017 – The Gate Cinema @6.30pm

GALWAY – Thursday 09/02/2017 – IMC Cinemas @ 7.00pm

BELFAST- Thursday 09/02/2017 - MOVIE HOUSE Cinemas, Dublin Road, Belfast @ 6.30pm TBC

Email WITS with your name and chosen venue by Thursday 2 February to enter a draw for a pair of tickets. The number of tickets per venue varies. We'll get back to you with how to collect your ticket asap after 2 February. Thank you 20th Century Fox for the tickets.

HIDDEN FIGURES is the incredible untold story of Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae)—brilliant African-American women working at NASA, who served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation’s confidence, turned around the Space Race, and galvanized the world.  The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations to dream big.

The story also resonates deeply with today’s issues and has relevancy globally on women’s empowerment, on racial issues and how advances in technology have replaced humans. This is a film about the sisterhood of talented women who overcame gender and race barriers in this fun, inspiring and thrilling account of the mission to the moon and beyond but it’s also about love and family.


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