Background : As the labor force decreases due to low birth rates and an aging population,local communities and countries must recognize the need and advantages to women working in science and technology fields. GJISWIST (Gwangju‐Jeonnam Institute for Supporting Women in Science & Technology), established in June of 2006, was designated and supported by the Ministry of Science & Technology of Korea to realize this goal. Objective : The objectives of the institute was

1. to foster and support women in science and technology
2. to enhance the capabilities of female science workers and raise their employment rate, and
3. to raise the contributions of female science workers, and their visibility within the science community in Korea as well as abroad.

Methods : We offered various education programs such as science communicator, scientific writing advisor, project planning expert, SOHO‐IT(Small Office Home Office‐IT), bio‐agricultural industrial technologies, and lab manager courses. Among the above mentioned programs I would like to focus my presentation on the activities of science communicators. In Korea, encouraged by the present government, the After School Programs such as computers, English, traditional dancing, musical instruments, ceramics, and science experiments, etc are very active. The Science Communicators were produced to work as the After School teachers for the elementary and junior high schools. However, we did not want them to be confined inside of Korea. We wanted the science communicators to be sent to overseas Korean schools as well as the native schools of developing countries.

Results : Gwangju and Jeonnam Province together comprise the southwestern part of Korea and the major economy is based on the agriculture. The most serious problem of this area for the last decade is that bachelors are not able to find eligible women for marriage. Presently, approximately 1/3 of the wedding is with the brides of the foreign countries such as Viet Nam, Philippine, Mongolia, China, Uzbekistan, Russia, Cambodia, etc. The children of these international marriages have difficulties in adjusting to elementary school as their Korean language skills are poor and they look different. The science communicator graduates of our program teach these children science experiments, encourage them to develop scientific thinking, and raise interest in science. Science is the field which is easily accessible with less language problems. There will be a likely shortage of scientists, technologists and engineers in the future if Korean youngsters continue to avoid science and technology fields as they have done after the Korean IMF(International Monetary Fund) period of 1997~1998. Representatives of our institute visited the Shanghai Elementary School, China to carry out Science Festival for 600 school children. It was the first time since the school started and they were very excited about experiments such as slush making, to explain the concept of freezing point drop with salt, mobile phone accessory of DNA double helix made with beads, Sudoku, density experiments, turbine engines, blood glucose checking, etc. Our visit to Shanghai Elementary School was beneficial not only for the students but also for the science communicators. They were encouraged by the enthusiasm children had for their experiences of the Science Festival. Science experiments can encourage curiosity in the science and technology field, even with little discussion involved.

Conclusion : We will continue to produce science communicators for the After Schools. We will also produce science camp teachers for overseas Korean schools as well as native schools among the Science Communicator Course alumni and extend such activities to developing countries. Our institute will do our best to contribute to the development of science and technology to help women enter the fields of science, technology and engineering, and to help the children of minority groups and of developing countries. I cordially invite you to partner with us in this endeavor and make the world a better place to live in. Thank you very much.

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 [PCST]
PCST Network

Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

Women and science together!

Haeng Park   GJISWIST(Gwangju‐Jeonnam Institute for Supporting Women in Science & Technology), College of Pharmacy, Chonnam National University

Young‐Sook Lee   GJISWIST(Gwangju‐Jeonnam Institute for Supporting Women in Science & Technology), College of Nursing, Chonnam National University

Jung Ko   GJISWIST(Gwangju‐Jeonnam Institute for Supporting Women in Science & Technology), Chonnam National University

Background : As the labor force decreases due to low birth rates and an aging population,local communities and countries must recognize the need and advantages to women working in science and technology fields. GJISWIST (Gwangju‐Jeonnam Institute for Supporting Women in Science & Technology), established in June of 2006, was designated and supported by the Ministry of Science & Technology of Korea to realize this goal. Objective : The objectives of the institute was

1. to foster and support women in science and technology
2. to enhance the capabilities of female science workers and raise their employment rate, and
3. to raise the contributions of female science workers, and their visibility within the science community in Korea as well as abroad.

Methods : We offered various education programs such as science communicator, scientific writing advisor, project planning expert, SOHO‐IT(Small Office Home Office‐IT), bio‐agricultural industrial technologies, and lab manager courses. Among the above mentioned programs I would like to focus my presentation on the activities of science communicators. In Korea, encouraged by the present government, the After School Programs such as computers, English, traditional dancing, musical instruments, ceramics, and science experiments, etc are very active. The Science Communicators were produced to work as the After School teachers for the elementary and junior high schools. However, we did not want them to be confined inside of Korea. We wanted the science communicators to be sent to overseas Korean schools as well as the native schools of developing countries.

Results : Gwangju and Jeonnam Province together comprise the southwestern part of Korea and the major economy is based on the agriculture. The most serious problem of this area for the last decade is that bachelors are not able to find eligible women for marriage. Presently, approximately 1/3 of the wedding is with the brides of the foreign countries such as Viet Nam, Philippine, Mongolia, China, Uzbekistan, Russia, Cambodia, etc. The children of these international marriages have difficulties in adjusting to elementary school as their Korean language skills are poor and they look different. The science communicator graduates of our program teach these children science experiments, encourage them to develop scientific thinking, and raise interest in science. Science is the field which is easily accessible with less language problems. There will be a likely shortage of scientists, technologists and engineers in the future if Korean youngsters continue to avoid science and technology fields as they have done after the Korean IMF(International Monetary Fund) period of 1997~1998. Representatives of our institute visited the Shanghai Elementary School, China to carry out Science Festival for 600 school children. It was the first time since the school started and they were very excited about experiments such as slush making, to explain the concept of freezing point drop with salt, mobile phone accessory of DNA double helix made with beads, Sudoku, density experiments, turbine engines, blood glucose checking, etc. Our visit to Shanghai Elementary School was beneficial not only for the students but also for the science communicators. They were encouraged by the enthusiasm children had for their experiences of the Science Festival. Science experiments can encourage curiosity in the science and technology field, even with little discussion involved.

Conclusion : We will continue to produce science communicators for the After Schools. We will also produce science camp teachers for overseas Korean schools as well as native schools among the Science Communicator Course alumni and extend such activities to developing countries. Our institute will do our best to contribute to the development of science and technology to help women enter the fields of science, technology and engineering, and to help the children of minority groups and of developing countries. I cordially invite you to partner with us in this endeavor and make the world a better place to live in. Thank you very much.

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