Updated: Jul 9, 2018
Author: Samuel Goodfellow
If life was a fortune cookie, what would you want yours to say?
My personal hope is that I would get one saying that I will leave this world better than when I came into it through my actions. How you may ask? Simple. Embracing and filling the gaps in science education that is dominant throughout our country.
Living in a neighborhood filled with a diversity hotspot of various cultures and backgrounds gave me the advantage to embrace the change that we, as a population, should be doing. Being Caucasian, I’ve encountered several situations in which people question my moral compass, but after a conversation or seeing of my actions they realize my intent and purpose here is good. It’s funny though because you would think coming from an impoverished neighborhood infested with crime, drugs and gang violence you would expect me to be cynical and see the world as bleak. Thanks to my passion through science, I found that we think at a micro perspective and not for a macro purpose, yet.
Coming into adulthood, I witnessed several of my friends who were not only minorities, but first-generation students, fall through the gaps in our educational system. In my town, we expected most students to not continue their education past high school. We knew college was for those of a privileged background or whom didn’t have to hold down a job for support. There was also a stigma that if you didn’t do well in science in high school, that you’re not smart. Fact of the matter, that stigma carried over into college. Nonetheless, I’m here to reassure you all that you’re able to break these restrictions of society and push through no matter what obstacles you may encounter.
One great way to put it into perspective is to think of all the famous scientists you are being taught of in school. What was their background, rich or poor? What education opportunities did they have? What about their race? Good questions, right? Recently, there’s been a push of scientists that are finally representing our population rather than a slanted bias that was at one time, relevant. The unfortunate thing is we have not yet accepted that a change needs to occur. It wasn’t until college that I found a way to potentially prevent this failed system for most first-generation scientists, or even scientists in general. This is done through a communal effort to help those who were never given a chance, the guidance, the words of encouragement needed to survive. Those such as you, and yes, I am talking about you because if you’re reading this, then you’re here for a reason.
Alright, I’ll stop blogging about myself and hope that in the future I’ll be able to provide more insight through actual experiences of how I gave back to my community and can help. I just wanted to offer an introduction to let you know you’re not alone. We, as one, will push forward to share the information necessary to have us all succeed in STEM. Because alone, you may go faster, but together we can go further. Until next time, scientist.