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March 5, 2015

Each year on March 8, hundreds of International Women's Day events occur all around the world. The events range from small informal gatherings to large-scale tributes. Laurier is taking part with events throughout the week to engage students in Waterloo and Brantford.

The Brantford campus' Collective for Feminist Action and Research (CFAR), in collaboration with the Brantford Women’s Faculty Colleague, will hold events from March 9 to 12.

“One of the events we have organized is a workshop with social justice activist Julie Lalonde,” said Rebecca Godderis, associate professor and program coordinator, Society, Culture and Environment. “The workshop will explore the value of creating women’s space on campuses. Most universities have a women’s centre, including Laurier's Waterloo campus, but we have yet to establish one on the Brantford campus.”

Follow CFAR on Twitter: @CFARBrantford.

The Laurier Centre for Women in Science is holding a special free screening of the award-winning documentary Particle Fever on Sunday, March 8 at 2:30 p.m. The film is about the hunt for the Higgs boson – the biggest experiment ever built. There will be a panel of scientists and experts after the screening discussing science, gender and film. This event is open to the public. Tickets are available at eventbrite.com.

Learning about the actual experiences of women scientists is an important part of encouraging women and girls in science. To learn about what it is like to be a woman in physics today in countries across the world, visit MySTEMstory.wlu.ca. This website, which contains over 30 stories about women in science, was created when Laurier hosted the fifth annual International Union of Pure and Applied Physics International Conference on Women in Physics, and the site continues to grow.

”Whether you’re a career researcher, an undergraduate or a high school student, my hope is that you will be fired up and spurred on to achieve great things as you read these stories,” said Shohini Ghose, director of the Laurier Centre for Women in Science. “One day you may share your own story to inspire others.”

Allison McDonald, assistant professor of biology, provides down-to-earth, experience-based advice to women in science. Her blog features tips on blending family with academic career success, tips for graduate school as well as thoughts on science role models. You can also follow her on Twitter: @AEMcDonaldWLU.

“I found that I was getting questions from young women at conferences about what the job of a scientist is like,” said McDonald. “I wanted to reach a broader audience by blogging about my experiences as an early researcher.”

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