SAGE Musings: Geoscientist Biographical Sketchespublished Jun 28, 2017
When I was in college, the only career I imagined for myself was following in my parents' footsteps. I suspect I'm not the only one. How can we help our students - especially those whose parents aren't geoscientists - imagine themselves as future geoscientists? Of course, simply providing information about careers and career opportunities is a good place to start. The SAGE 2YC website has a set of pages of career information, and these are great resources for you and your students. But sometimes an example stimulates the imagination, particularly if a student finds the example easy to relate to -- just as it was easy for me to imagine doing what my parents did. This is where geoscientist biographical sketches, sometimes called "(geo)scientist spotlights," come in.
The SAGE 2YC "Faculty as Change Agents" project has a collection of geoscientist biographical sketches on our page about developing students' science identity. I know that a number of faculty Change Agents are also collecting biographical sketches of your own former 2YC geoscience students. In addition, a number of professional organizations have collections of geoscientist biographical sketches. Here are a few that I know about....
In the geosciences, broadly speaking:
- Earth Science World, the Sloan Career Cornerstone Center, and Geotimes all have collections of geoscientist biographical sketches.
- SACNAS, the Society for Advancing Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science, has a large collection of biographical sketches of scientists, including geoscientists, searchable by scientific field, ethnicity, and/or gender.
- The National Association of Geoscience Teachers has a collection of biographical sketches of a diverse set of geoscientists in a diverse array of careers.
- NASA has a collection of biographical sketches of NASA's Earth scientists.
In the ocean sciences:
- The Oceanography Society has a collection of oceanography career biographical sketches, and in 2014 devoted a special issue of their magazine, Oceanography, to the topic of women in Oceanography.
- OceanCareers.com also has a collection of biographical sketches illustrating careers in the ocean sciences.
- Deborah K. Smith, Lori Dolby, and Ed Schiele have compiled biographical sketches of women oceanographers.
- The Joint Oceanographic Institutions has a set of web pages about careers in scientific ocean drilling.
Do you know of other such collections? If so, tell us about them!
Have you incorporated biographical sketches into your courses? If so, tell us how!
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