Current Job: Postdoc
Scientific Discipline/Field: Genetics
Pick some letters (L,G,B,T,Q etc.): G (Cisgender)
What does your job involve?
My current field of research is in genetic pest management. Primarily we are working on understanding a naturally-occurring selfish genetic element. Most of my actual work involves standard genetic practices: DNA and RNA isolations and amplifications, and analysis of sequence data. I also play a big role in writing and editing presentations, abstracts, and papers that come out of the lab.
How did you get to this job (education etc.)?
After completing a bachelor’s degree in biology, I joined a graduate program in genetics, from which I eventually got my PhD. During grad school, I met my current lab head, and when I graduated, she offered me a position with her lab.
Do you feel being LGBT has affected your career decisions?
Only in one respect: the job offer I mentioned in the previous question allowed me to stay in the area with my now-husband as he completed his degree. However, the prevalence of private, religiously-founded colleges does make me cautious about the future, if I pursue a career in undergraduate education.
Have you had any reactions from colleagues about being LGBT, either good or bad?
Plenty of reactions, all good. Most recently, in celebration of my nuptials, my lab mates threw a party and gave me a wedding gift.
Did you have any role models growing up (LGBT, STEM, totally unrelated…)?
Mr. Spock, the alien crew member on the original series of Star Trek. Spock may not be LGBT, but he was an outsider, and as such, can easily be seen to represent a queer perspective. But, to be honest, I just enjoyed his logic, and his position as science officer.
What are your plans for the future?
I would love a career in editing research papers. I also believe I would enjoy educating future generations in genetics.
Anything else you’d like to add?
If nothing else comes of this email, I have enjoyed writing it, since it meets three of my passions: science, writing, and LGBTQ issues.