Why women leave the STEM fields

(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at: lawrence@krubner.com

These are worrisome stories:

I have my masters in a STEM field (forensic biology) and worked in the industry for 7 years before quitting and shifting careers completely. The terrifying and extremely persistent offers on late-night scenes, comments in the lab, and straight-up harassment from police officers in the field meant that I had to be an emotionless robot all the time or else risk my reputation/credibility. In many cases, my unresponsiveness made it worse and made the guy in question more aggressive about it. I was more terrified by the cops I worked alongside than the suspected murders and rapists I had to take samples from.

I tried going to my boss, but he’d get a faux-concerned look and ask me if I “really, really” wanted to report sexual harassment in a way that scared me down to my bones.

Over the course of 7 years, my performance evaluations were always positive but included comments that I needed to be warmer and more friendly. I absolutely understand why women are leaving.

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