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King's celebrates first Women in STEMM Season

King’s has marked its first Women in STEMM season, celebrating women working in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine.

Taking place between the UN International Day of Women and Girls in Science on 11 February International Women’s Day on 8 March, the season included a series of events and a social media campaign celebrating female scientists at King's and exploring how we overcome the barriers that hold them back. 

Issues that were highlighted included the representation of women in positions of leadership and power; the importance of gender equality across the sciences, and the need for an intersectional approach.

Staff and students came together across King's to share ideas and spark new conversations and actions for building a culture at King’s that benefits all members of the community.

Flagship event: Mind the Gap – a leap towards equality

The main event on 26 February explored how inclusive research culture can support women in STEMM to flourish in their careers.

Senior Vice President (Academic), Professor Rachel Mills opened the event as guest speaker, followed by a panel of researchers and PhD students from across the Faculties of Natural, Mathematical & Engineering Sciences (NMES) and Life Sciences & Medicine (FoLSM).

The panel included undergraduate student and KCL Womxn in STEMM Society President Samriddhi Sehgal; Biomedical Engineering PhD candidate Tiarna Lee; NMES Executive Dean Professor Rachel Bearon; and FoLSM Vice Dean (Research & Impact) Professor Rachel Tribe. Dr Manasi Nandi, Reader in Integrative Pharmacology, lead the panel as Chair.

Professor Rachel Mills shared her background as a woman in STEMM, including the challenges she’s faced, what she’s learnt about forging a successful career as a woman in STEMM, and what organisations need to account for.

“I think STEMM careers are about people… teams of people, networks of people, ecosystems of people. They’re about working on the most important problem you can think of right now and… learning from your mistakes and moving on and building that ecosystem of global scholars and scientists.”– Professor Rachel Mills, Senior Vice President (Academic)

Following Mills’s keynote speech, a panel invited questions from the audience and discussed the challenges facing women in research and how we can all better support women in STEMM.

Undergraduate student Samriddhi talked about the increasing focus of inclusion at King’s, while Tiarna spoke about how she has witnessed first-hand the benefit to research of working with people of all backgrounds and experiences.

Revised Panalists WIS
“It’s not just about King’s hiring people for diversity – that diversity means that people think differently and there’s a diversity of thought that helps everyone."– Tiarna Lee, Biomedical Engineering PhD Candidate

The academics on the panel all spoke about the importance of mentorship for women building careers in STEMM, and how to go about creating a support network within the industry. 

“Don’t be afraid to ask for advice from people you respect and are interested in. Look around you and get a mixture of different people’s views... As a generalisation, women are sometimes more afraid of taking risks – but what’s the worst that can happen? It might fail, but you should try it anyway."– Professor Rachel Bearon, Executive Dean of the Faculty of NMES

We talked with staff and students throughout NMES to hear their thoughts on studying in STEMM and why it's important girls have pathways to careers in these industries.


Released as part of the Women in STEMM season, a new podcast series from the Faculty of Life Sciences and Medicine explores the work of researchers addressing inequalities in their fields.

Hosted by Dr Manasi Nandi, Humanising Healthcare: Mind the Gap, covers key issues like the engrained bias in artificial intelligence data sets; lack of awareness of women's cancer symptoms; and how differing cardiovascular symptoms in men and women can lead to treatment delays.

Women in STEMM video series

We spoke with women in our faculties to hear how they have achieved their STEMM goals and built their careers. They shared a lot of insights of what more we can do to bring more girls into STEMM and support women's careers.

To see our full video series for the 2024 season, visit our YouTube playlist.

Women in STEMM Season

A month-long celebration of women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine.

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