September 15, 2018

Kennesaw Ladies in Physics hosts Women in Physics Social

Kennesaw Ladies in Physics (KLIP), along with their advisor Dr. Kisa Ranasinghe, hosted the “Women in Physics Social” on Saturday, September 15, to build a network among women in physics. Over 40 physicists from around the state attended, including representatives from Georgia State, Spelman College, Emory University, and Georgia Tech, as well as women from associated industries including patent law.

Group photo of the Women in Physics Social event participants

KLIP president, Emma Pearson, gave the welcome, and introduced Dr. Kevin Stokes, chair of the Department of Physics. After lunch, the keynote was delivered by Dr. Linda Frinzi, Professor of Physics at Emory University, with a title "Lets Pick Ourselves Up." The talk was focused on the lack of women in physics and how the numbers of women faculty decreases with rank.

Following this informative lecture, participants were invited to consider next steps toward improving the quality of experiences for and quantity of Women in Physics in Georgia, with an overarching goal of developing a sustainable coalition while creating long lasting impacts. Students, faculty, and community members discussed the different types of challenges facing women in Physics, particularly the experience of being the only woman student in a class or being perceived in a one-dimensional way. Participants identified the following challenges:

  • Physics is not visible to younger girls, or children
  • Perception that physics is hard, especially for girls
  • There is a need to educate men in physics around ally-ship
  • There is a need to have outreach across the state
  • There is a need to present physics as accessible
  • There is a need to generate support in mathematics in early education as a foundation/gateway for physics

At the end of the meeting, Dr. Ranasinghe invited our neighbor institutions to host the next collaboration.

Group photo of Kennesaw Ladies in Physics President, Emma Pearson (left), and two other members (right)
Photo of the Women in Physics Social Event
Photo of the Women in Physics Social Event
Photo of Emma Pearson, President of the Kennesaw Ladies in Physics student group organization speaking at the event on Saturday, September 15, 2018