Talking While Female

You may remember a piece WCS-UW posted a while ago about uptalk and how men and women use it differently (link here).

To further that conversation, I’d like to introduce you to a piece that NPR recently published about which types of voices and speaking styles are perceived as more competent.  In addition to uptalk, the article talks about higher registers, vocal fry, and other factors that can make a woman sound less authoritative.  You can find the full article here.

What do you guys think?  Would you try to change the sound of your voice to make colleagues take you more seriously?


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Year Two Recap

Yesterday marks two years since the day of our very first meeting! Thanks to everyone who’s been involved, whether you were here from the beginning or you’ve just started. Here’s a timeline of some of the events and projects we’ve worked on during our second year as a student group.

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Meeting recap 10/8/2014

Thanks to everyone who attended Wednesday’s member meeting! Here’s a recap of the events and projects we discussed.

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Fall Kick-Off Member Meeting

FallOur first meeting of Fall 2014 will be Wed., October 8th at 5:30pm in CHB 439. Come find out about all of the activities we have planned for October and how you can get involved!

Email if you have any questions.

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Meeting recap 9/4/2014

We have lots of exciting events and projects coming up! October will be a particularly busy month for WCS-UW. Here’s a recap of some topics discussed at last week’s meeting.

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Maryam Mirzakhani is the first woman to win the Fields Medal

Way to go Maryam Mirzakhani!  She is the first woman to win the Fields Medal, and WCS-UW couldn’t be prouder!

Full article here.

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Boating in the Arboretum with WCS


The Women in Chemical Sciences will be getting together on July 27th to have a relaxing afternoon boating in the UW Arboretum. If you would like to join us, contact Joan Bleecker for more information!

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Meeting recap 6/25/2014

The full recap can be found here. Some highlights:

Mindfulness workshop: The event with Meghann Gerber was very successful and we’re planning to repeat it, with Meghann again or possibly someone else, in January. We are also still working to compile and distribute a list of resources for dealing with grad school, from mental health to conflict resolution. If you have any links, mindfulness-related or not, please add them to the document!

Summer outing: Joan is organizing our first WCS summer outing! We’ve voted to rent boats, paddle around the Arboretum, and have a picnic. Fill out this Doodle poll to help determine when this outing will take place.

Book club: We’re reading Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do, and meetings will be on Tuesdays at noon in CHB 239, starting next week with a discussion of Chapter 1. If you want to participate, please add your contact information to this spreadsheet. The schedule, along with discussion leader and snack signup, can be found here.

Mentoring toolkit: Scott, Joan, and Addie are continuing to develop the mentoring worksheet and work with the chemistry department to encourage communication between grad students and advisors. The first version, based on MIT’s Postdoctoral Mentoring and Advising Toolkit, can be found here. After talking to someone at Stanford who has developed similar resources, they are planning to develop different versions for grad students at different stages of their education. There will be a meeting to brainstorm and get feedback.

Chem WMN reminder: Join the Chemistry Women Mentorship Network (co-founded by Brandi Cossairt, our faculty advisor) if you haven’t already!

Christy Haynes: Christy Haynes, a professor at the University of Minnesota, will be at UW in October for an analytical seminar. She will also give a talk sponsored by WCS on October 21st.

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Summer book club

Women in Chemical Sciences is organizing a summer book club! We’ll be reading Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do by Claude Steele, which is available via Amazon and at the University Bookstore, and discussing various topics related to stereotypes and identity.

Meetings will be Tuesdays from 12 to 1 (or 1:30 if we have a lot to talk about) in CHB 239. We’ll read one chapter (usually 15-20 pages) each week, starting with Chapter 1 for the July 1st meeting. Each week, someone will lead the discussion and someone will bring a snack. You can sign up for either job, as well as adding any anticipated scheduling conflicts, on this Google spreadsheet if you’re interested.

If you are interested, please contact Heidi ( or add your name and email address to this contact list. Reminders, discussion questions, meeting recaps, and other resources will be sent out to that list of people, posted in this Google Drive folder, and/or posted on the blog here.

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Awesome new Ted Talk about changing the culture of science!

Uri Alon’s TED talk:

Why truly innovative science demands a leap into the unknown


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