Monday, November 8th was STEM Day here in the United States.
Were you able to celebrate?
At Skin Actives Scientific, the urge to recognize the role of STEM in our society is something we can get behind. It’s a moment that calls on us to think for a second about education, the future of our society, and the world at large. What we do with education says a lot about where we are headed.
As we often talk about here on the Skin Actives blog, science is the process that human beings use to understand the nature of physical reality that surrounds us. STEM, which stands for
Science, Technology, Engineering & Math
recognizes that while once these fields were seen as separate and distinct, the more that modern society continues to develop, the more we see cross pollination among them. It’s more important now than ever for our education system to provide a place for students to pursue these disciplines and to recognize children that have aptitudes for their study.
STEM and Girls
The benefits of STEM begin with primary education. This means that STEM must be introduced into the lives of children at an early age. This is why we talk about the influence of STEM and “girls” rather than STEM and “women”. If we are to have women represented at a frequency on par with their population in scientific fields, then we must begin with girls.
Despite the fact that early philosophers doubled their role with those of scientists by observing the natural world and attempting to draw conclusions, it has taken modern science centuries to attain a place of prominence in society. Admitting women into the halls of science, mathematics, medicine, engineering and technology have been perhaps even more daunting.
But things are beginning to change.
As the world is more and more reliant on the fruits of applied sciences, leaders can no longer stand by and discount the contributions of literally one half of the overall population. This realization stands in the shadow of the work that countless women have done to break into recalcitrant scientific fields for the betterment of humanity and the world itself.
Our Founder, Dr. Hannah Sivak is one such woman. Working her entire life in the “boy’s club” of scientific academia, she broke into entrepreneurship in the early 2000’s, another setting known for its masculine predominance.
Here’s what Dr. Sivak has to say about STEM:
“Decades ago, we had to convince girls that they didn’t have to go to home economics class, that they could do math and beat the boys at it. Nowadays, that gap is narrowing. Girls by now know that they can do math, and soccer or whatever they want. Salaries and faculty positions in universities are declining and boys seem to prefer law and business, and now it’s women taking teaching positions in universities.”
Supporting STEM Now
Dr. Sivak is an inspiration to many, including the workers at Skin Actives Scientific. Her advanced degrees and success in business are part of the very building blocks that form the foundation of Skin Actives Scientific.
And it runs in the family!
Dr. Sivak’s daughter is both a Skin Actives Scientific stakeholder and a medical doctor! Over the course of the COVID crisis, she continues to consult with Skin Actives at every turn to make sure that the health and well-being of all our employees benefits from the latest news and information.
But you don’t have to be formulating products or treating diseases to benefit from STEM knowledge. As Dr. Sivak puts it:
“Everybody should do STEM classes because science is far reaching and we are all affected by decisions made regarding science. We all need to understand the fundamentals of science.”
STEM and Daily Life
And Dr. Sivak is right! The fundamentals of science and mathematics go a long way to helping us in our understanding of the world. The practical application of these ideas go far beyond simple arithmetic. Science and math become universal languages that we can use to decode material reality that surrounds us.
Some of the readers of this blog may be old enough to remember when math teachers used to argue with you as to whether or not you could use a calculator on an important test. “You won’t always have access to a calculator when you’re out in the real world!” The teachers used to say. Those of us who were fairly glib might have replied with a cheeky, “I’ll carry one with me.” To which teachers used to retort, “oh sure you will.”
The world that we live in now was beyond the imaginings of ordinary people back then.
Even as we labored away over our tests with pencil and paper and no calculators allowed, scientists were working on the technology and the theory that would make mobile phones possible as a consumer goods, then smartphones, and then...well, everyone having a calculator in their pocket at all times.
But simply being able to do basic arithmetic with the aid of a calculator is just the beginning of using math to understand the physical universe!
The next level is to apply mathematical thinking and innate skepticism to the statistics your coworker loudly reports from their cubicle.
To thinking about how the speed of light and the movement of information interact.
To how in an age of technological marvels, nothing, nothing compares to the power of the human nervous system in terms of being able to assess information and turn it into action in factions of a second.
See, chemistry, physics, math, technology, all working together to create an enhanced understanding of the world we live in. This is the power of knowledge, and knowledge is beautiful. Reading a blog, becoming your own skin health expert and then taking what you have learned and applying it to your buying choices and your daily routine, these are the natural by-products of an education based in STEM.
So, support your school district’s STEM program! Support your child or niece or nephew and their interest in STEM! Thanks for reading another episode of the Skin Actives blog today, we hope that you’ll join us here again this Friday when we have some special news just for you!