Home Lifestyle Arts and Features NUI Galway nanoscientist bound for Antarctica on Women’s Leadership mission

NUI Galway nanoscientist bound for Antarctica on Women’s Leadership mission

Galway nanoscientist Dr Jessamyn Fairfield, of the School of Physics at NUI Galway, is fundraising for a ground-breaking leadership programme for women working in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

The Homeward Bound initiative will culminate in a research trip to the Antarctica next month (November).

It aims to heighten the influence and impact of women in making decisions that shape our planet.

When it was launched in 2016 it resulted in the largest ever female expedition to Antarctica.

Homeward Bound takes place over the course of a year, supporting women in science to significantly improve their clarity, confidence, shared vision and strategic capability.

It helps women to take up leadership roles globally and to proactively contribute to a sustainable world both individually and collectively.

At the end of the programme next month, Dr Fairfield and her cohort will travel to Antarctica, which is experiencing some of the most severe consequences of climate change, with implications for the rest of the world.

Dr Fairfield said: “To solve societal challenges like climate change, we can’t ignore the talents of half the population, women, and especially at the leadership level. Research has shown that diverse groups produce better science, better business, and more creative solutions to problems. We don’t just need diversity of people – we need diversity of thought.”

It will be Dr Fairfield’s second polar mission.

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In June last year she completed a two-week Arctic Circle residency program on board a ship of scientists and artists working to highlight how climate change in the Arctic will affect all of humanity.

During that trip she built a detector out of ice to capture energy from cosmic particles passing through.

Homeward Bound was founded 10 years ago and the first Antarctic voyage took place in 2016.

Dr Fairfield has opened a crowdfunding page to support this year’s programme and funds raised will go towards the Homeward Bound programme costs, which cover leadership coaching and tools, visibility and science instruction, and of course, the capstone voyage to Antarctica in November 2019 with 100 women in STEM from around the world.

The programme is also funded in part by the Office of Equality and Diversity at NUI Galway.

For more about Homeward Bound, visit: https://homewardboundprojects.com.au/about/.

Visit Jessamyn’s crowdfunding page at: https://chuffed.org/project/jessamyns-leadership-voyage-homeward-bound

To read Dr Fairfield’s blog ‘In Search of Polar Perspectives’ visit: https://letstalkaboutscience.wordpress.com/2019/09/04/polar-perspectives-homeward-bound/


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