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Resilience and Success

The Professional Journeys of African American Women Scientists


Kabba E. Colley and Binta M. Colley

Resilience and Success charts the education and career trajectories of African American women scientists and sheds light as to why young African American females drop off the science map in high school. It constructs a story about the map, which includes exits, entrances and turns. This phenomenon was influenced by cultural and socio-economic issues; class, race relations and racial biases; geography and most important, opportunities and serendipity. None of the roads were smooth as these African American women followed in the footsteps of those who had gone before them. It is critical for young African American female students to know that they have a passion and sense of curiosity befitting a future scientist. The stories of these women serve as a model for the way families, teachers, counselors, community activists and policy makers can participate in developing a new generation of African American women scientists.


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APPENDIX I: Race, Gender, and Science Survey 135


APPENDIX I Race, Gender, and Science Survey 1. Personal History a. Age group b. Marital status 0–35 35–45 45–55 55–65 65–75 More than 75 Married Unmarried Single 2. Academic Background a. What type of school did you go to? Public Private Parochial Others: b. Degrees earned BS MS PhD Others Please indicate: c. What type of after-school and/or extracurricular activities did you engage in when you were in school? Baseball/softball Basketball Soccer Swimming Cheerleading Music Drama club Science fairs Honor society Newspaper Yearbook FFA/FTA, etc. Student council Hobby societies Museum Mentoring Tutoring Public library Field trips Internship Summer job Debate club Community service University-sponsored programs Exchange programs Foreign travel Others: d. Who contributed most toward your education? Father Mother Both Parents Grandparents Uncles/Aunts Brothers/Sisters Teachers Friends Others Please indicate: RESILIENCE AND SUCCESS 136 e. Who contributed most toward your science education? Father Mother Both Parents Grandparents Uncles/Aunts Brothers/Sisters Teachers Friends Others Please indicate: f. Discipline Agriculture Biology Chemistry Climate Science Earth & Environmental Sciences Engineering Food/Nutritional Sciences Forestry Geochemistry Health Science Immunology Marine Science Material Science Medical Science Microbiology Neuroscience Paleontology Physics Planetary Science Plant Science Space Science Wildlife Conservation Others: 3. Professional Trajectories a. Career path b. Experience c. Primary responsibility Government Industry University/College Not-for-profit Private Others Please indicate: Less than 5 years 10–15 15–20 20–25 25–30 More than 30 years Administration/ management Research & development Teaching Postdoctoral Marketing/Service Others Please indicate: d. What made you choose to become a scientist or...

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