Campus Life

Stockton Environmental Club celebrates women in STEM

Written for The Argo by Jared Keane

On Friday, March 31, 2023, the Stockton Environmental Club hosted a dinner to recognize women in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) community.

Sophia Bradach read a brief statement from students to acknowledge nine female professors within STEM, while the guest speaker and Stockton alumna Dr. Sara Tadros gave a speech regarding her experience as a woman in a STEM field. 

Students recognize Stockton STEM faculty. Photo courtesy of Jared Keane.

“Thank you for having me today, I love being here in Stockton. I was a biology major when I was here. I felt like I belonged in the classroom and didn’t feel outnumbered. But culturally, women are second class. I am from Egypt and I am a first-generation college graduate. My parents pushed us to learn and to do more,” said Tadros.

Tadros is a 2003 Stockton alumna who is currently a chiropractor in a male-dominated field. She continued to share her experience in the workforce, touching upon how her identity as an immigrant impacted her academic life.

“Growing up I was a minority and a foreigner, I came to this county when I was 10 years old, didn’t speak a word of English, and got made fun of in school. Growing up my parents would encourage us and give me the confidence to succeed. The profession I went into is extremely male-dominated. I love what I do and never stopped during COVID,” said Tadros.

“At the end of the day, it’s important to recognize what your strengths are and have confidence. I’ve had so many male and female role models. My message today, and why I’m here is don’t allow anyone to tell you can’t do anything…There’s about 27% of women in S.T.E.M. Even more shocking is women in healthcare. We represent 80% of the workforce in healthcare, but only 24% are upper level, most women in healthcare are nurses, aids, and lower-paying positions,” she said.

Tadros encouraged the students in attendance not to let gender-based discrimination in STEM hinder them from following their passions, stating, “Please don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do it or that you won’t be as good as someone else. I’ve had to leave jobs where despite how hard I worked, they still didn’t see my worth. I left until I found a place that did see how hard I work and how much effort I put in. Knowing your worth is so important. Don’t let anyone tell you it’s okay that you’re being offered less.”

She closed the speech, saying, “Don’t let anyone push you in a direction that you’re supposed to go in. You’re not supposed to go in any direction but the direction you see yourself in. Find the people that will build you up and build each other up.”