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Women in Science – Girls are Boss!

Otago Museum in collaboration with the Dodd-Walls Centre for Photonic and Quantum Technologies is hosting a series of workshops to mark the International Day of Women and Girls in Science on 11 February. The workshops are aimed at intermediate and high school students, and educators, and will run over 11 to 12 February.

Facilitators Alexia Hilbertidou and Vicky Crawford will lead discussions about the challenges and opportunities facing female leaders. This is the first time GirlBoss has presented workshops in Dunedin.

19-year-old Alexia, founder of GirlBoss, has spoken to more than 30 000 people in corporate offices, government agencies and schools in the last 12 months as well as amassing a significant amount of leadership and entrepreneurial experience. She has been named a Global Teen Leader, a Ministry of Youth Development Top 5 Young Leader, and a winner of the Westpac Young Leader Award. In 2018 she was selected from 20 000 nominations as one of 60 Queen's Young Leaders.

She says, “I am incredibly excited to bring GirlBoss to Dunedin to work with both educators and young women. Otago Museum has led the way when it comes to innovative STEM education and it is great that I can be a part of this incredible event. The pursuit of science is one of the most exciting and noble of endeavours and I would love to see more NZ women join this creative and thrilling adventure.”

Vicky is a senior teacher with 20 years’ experience in New Zealand in both primary and secondary settings. She co-founded the Albany Junior High NEXT Business Academy, is a member of the Upper Harbour Financial Capability Advisory Board, and has been a Toastmasters president.

Otago Museum Science Engagement Manager Nathalie Wierdak says, “The Museum is constantly looking for opportunities to engage our young people in science and showing them ways to dream big for their future. It’s really exciting to have GirlBoss coming to us for this series of workshops and we’re so pleased the schools have taken advantage of the opportunity.”

Professor David Hutchinson, Dodd-Walls Centre Director says, “The Dodd-Walls Centre is committed to promoting involvement in research and science education for all, including under-represented groups such as Māori, Pasifika, and girls and women. This is the third year we’ve partnered with the Otago Museum to bring together a science programme as part of the celebration of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science.”