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  • Thomas Adewumi University Hosts IUPAC Global Women's Breakfast 2024, Focusing on Catalyzing Diversity in Science

Thomas Adewumi University Hosts IUPAC Global Women's Breakfast 2024, Focusing on Catalyzing Diversity in Science

  • 29th Feb, 2024 11:03am
  • News Update

Oko-Irese, Kwara State, Nigeria

February 29, 2024

Thomas Adewumi University played host to a remarkable event on Wednesday, as it hosted the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) Global Women's Breakfast 2024. The event, held under the theme "Catalyzing Diversity in Science," was a collaborative effort led by the Chemical Science Department of the University and coordinated by the Directorate of Research, Innovations, and Product Development (DRIPDEV).

The event gathered the female staff, students, and participants from five invited secondary schools, including the sister institution, Thomas Adewumi International College. Dr. Adekemi Dahunsi, Director of DRIPDEV, commenced the proceedings with a warm welcome, emphasizing the significance of the global celebration for women scientists. She underscored the event's aim to overcome barriers in science and advocate for diversity within the field.

Subsequently, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Francisca Oladipo delivered a brief yet impactful speech, highlighting the institution's commitment to celebrating the intellectual prowess, resilience, and innovative contributions of women in science. The Vice-Chancellor welcomed Professor Oluwatoyin Odeku, a distinguished Professor from the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Ibadan, as the keynote speaker.

Prof. Odeku delivered the keynote address titled "Catalyzing Diversity in Science," where she delved into the multifaceted aspects of diversity within the scientific community. Diversity in science encompasses the cultivation of talent and the promotion of full inclusion across the social spectrum. This encompasses individuals from backgrounds traditionally underrepresented as well as those from backgrounds traditionally well represented.

Types of diversity highlighted during the presentation include cultural diversity, racial diversity, religious diversity, age diversity, gender diversity, sexual orientation diversity, disability diversity, and educational diversity, among others. The importance of diversity in science lies in its promotion of innovation, creativity, equality, inclusion, addressing global challenges, enhancing decision-making processes, and providing diverse role models and representation.

Furthermore, the benefits of diversity in science were elucidated, including the fact that diverse scientists ask diverse questions, diversity facilitates specialization, diversity invigorates problem-solving, and diversity balances biases. However, challenges in fostering diversity within the scientific community were also addressed, such as increased tension and conflict between different groups, bias, discrimination, harassment, and communication issues.

Specific challenges faced by women in science were highlighted, including traditional gender roles, balancing roles as wives, mothers, and homemakers with professional aspirations, achieving work-life balance, encountering hostile environments from coworkers, gender discrimination, and a lack of role models and mentors. Strategies to catalyze diversity in science were discussed, emphasizing the importance of making inclusion a priority, providing mentoring opportunities, encouraging collaboration and networking, increasing access to education and resources for marginalized communities, offering diversity training, and promoting diversity in leadership positions. Following her insightful lecture, attendees engaged in a lively question and answer session, addressing inquiries ranging from career advice to mentorship and role models. 

The event also featured presentations by Mrs. Oluwadamilola Ezekiel, a lecturer in the Department of Biological Sciences, discussing the value and importance of empowering the Girl Child, and Miss Agbana Wonderful from the Department of Anatomy, who spoke on the role of women in science.

Dr. Adekemi Dahunsi concluded the event by extending gratitude to all participants, including the invited high schools and their teachers, for their active involvement. Mrs. Omolara Arosanyin, a lecturer in the Faculty of Nursing Science, offered the vote of thanks and led the closing prayers, marking the end of a successful and inspiring gathering aimed at catalyzing diversity in the sciences.

The event served as a testament to Thomas Adewumi University's unwavering commitment to fostering inclusivity and recognizing the invaluable contributions of women in shaping the landscape of scientific innovation.


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