Women in STEM: Neha

The physicist Neha

Update (25th July 2020). When I asked Neha to be part of my Women in STEM series, I didn’t pay enough attention to the pronouns listed both on Instagram and on Twitter.

When the interview was published, Luc Riesbeck approached me on Twitter and pointed out my mistake.

I had no excuse. I just didn’t read the pronouns description.

I want to publicly apologize for my mistake and for my behavior, if that caused suffering to Neha or any other non-binary person.

I need to do better.

We all need to do better.

I support #NonBinary everywhere and especially #NonBinaryinSTEM.

My 30th guest is Neha, an undergrad student of Mathematics and Physics universe passionate and science communicator.

Hi @nehathemartian! First of all would you like to tell us something about you?

I’m Neha and I am 20 years old. I am currently pursuing a Mathematics and Physics undergrad degree and am an avid scientific communicator. I love the universe and hope to study supermassive blackholes in the future.

When did you start your Twitter account? How did you get the idea?

I started my Twitter with the intention to connect to more academics because I didn’t have the representation that I needed in real life. I met amazing academics who were just like me and absolutely smashing it in their respective fields and then I knew i belonged.

Can you tell us something about how you balance work and private life? 

It’s all about how you devote your time.Being a student it’s hard but what’s important is that you always keep time aside for mental wellbeing. It doesn’t have to be something fancy, just drawing or listening to music can go a long way.

During your academic studies how many women were in course? Why in your opinion?

Only a few. I never really thought about it initially but seeing how it affected my stand as someone who wasn’t a man, I realized that this has to change and that women should be seen more in man dominated STEM fields.

Have you ever felt harassed or being kept apart as a scholar because you are a woman?

I have suffered through mansplaining, condescending messages and inequality through my years. And I hope to be a part of a change that wipes this out soon.

How did you become passionate about science? 

Look up at the stars. I was in awe of them and always wanted to understand them more. I read up every space book i could find and after that I discovered the works of Carl Sagan and then there was no looking back.

Would you like to talk briefly about your job?

I currently work in a material science lab to study potential materials that are sturdy and cheap to be used as semiconductors.

Thank you so much for your time. Lastly, can you give any advice to girls interested in STEM?

If you’re passionate about something, go for it. Don’t let anyone convince you that you aren’t cut out for science.

Science is for everyone, it doesn’t see any color, sex, gender and race.

Follow Neha on Instagram and on Twitter!


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