NUI Galway celebrating LGBT community members in STEM fields

Galway Daily news NUI Galway celebrates LGBT students in STEM fields

LGBT staff and students at NUI Galway will be talking about their work in STEM disciplines next week to encourage others to feel more confident about their identities, and their work.

Thursday July 5 is the first international LGBT + STEM day and to show their support NUIG’s LGBT + Network is holding a series of talks on campus by staff and student researchers in STEM fields.

Chris Noone, co-chair of the LGBT + staff network and psychology lecturer said the university is committed to supporting people of all sexual identities to pursue the path they want.

“It is well documented that staff and students within the STEM disciplines face added difficulty in being out compared to those in other disciplines and we are proud to support International LGBT+ STEM Day and House of STEM, an Irish-based network dedicated to connecting and supporting LGBT+ scientists in Ireland.”

House of STEM was founded by NUIG graduate Dr. Shane O’Boyle last year to promote the representation of LGBT people within STEM disciplines.

Staff and students speaking for the event include Dr. David McNamara, professor of Geology whose talk An ‘Energetic Geologist’ is about sustainable extraction of mineral resources.

Masters student of Regenerative Medicine Cameron Keighron will be discussing what it’s like to be a researcher on the early stages of a study; while Dr. Stefaan W. Verbruggen will be getting to the bottom of just how strong is a baby’s kick in the womb. Could this researcher be used to identify promising footballers before they’re born? No. That was a silly thing to type.

Other talks will be have a greater focus on LGBT identity and diversity within STEM fields. Steve Muir from EA is coming to campus to talk about what the games developer is doing to promote diversity within the company.

The founders of Tógan Labs, a developer of open source software and internet consulting firm, Aoife Fitzgibbon-O’Riordan and Elizabeth Flanagan will be sharing the difficulties that can face openly LGBT entrepreneurs in their talk ‘Queering entrepreneurship: starting up in a toxic startup world’.

The new president of NUI Galway Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh will open the day at 1pm in the Alice Perry Engineering Building next Thursady, and the speakers will take the stage directly after.