This blog post is a little bit different. It's less focused on critical thinking around a specific environmental or science-related topic, and more of an update on life activities and what I see the future of Let's Do Something BIG. (LDSB.) to be.
Hi. I am Mariama. I am not sure I've properly introduced myself in this space before, but I am the person behind the sporadic posting of guest blogger material and the 'creator and editor' of LDSB.. I started this website in the fall of 2016 after diving deep into a thought dialogue about how wonderful words are as a motivator for change and a medium through which to educate. I was troubled by the state of the environment, where anthropogenic (human-caused) climate change was taking us and inspired to create a space where people from all walks of life could communicate their thoughts in relation to the environment or making the world a better place in general.
Over time, I have thought a lot about what makes (or could make) LDSB. unique, why people would or should choose to read the contents of this blog and community over others, and where I see this project going in the future. To be honest (and anyone who has read LDSB. posts from the beginning will know) the content of this blog has kind of been all over the place. It started as a place where interesting people from different places or walks of life could share what they thought to be valuable information for environmental advocates to know, has more recently acted as a platform from which to operate plastic pollution awareness campaigns, and a place where people could people talk about science communication. During this time, I have finished my undergraduate degree and have been nose-deep in graduate school work. As we speak this blog post is acting as a productive procrastination technique for me to delay finishing a final, 20-page paper and PhD application due this Friday. One thing that has remained consistent is that this website has been a space with content reflective of my thoughts and passions at any given point in time.
But I want this blog and community to have focus, and to be different.
Over the past year, different facets of my personal motivation and passions have been simmering, recently picking up in voracity, at times boiling over and resulting in hyper-motivation to inspire change in the world and spaces in which I work. I care a lot about equality (equality for all regardless of color, socioeconomic background, creed, gender or sexual orientation) and the environment. So, the logical way to combine these two personal motivators has been through advocating for equality and equal opportunity in the earth, ocean and environmental sciences. In the polar sciences, the realm in which I work, there is a huge gap between the number of women (of course just one type of diversity) who are graduate school level educated (nearly half) and who ends up in a tenured position in this area. This has to change. In general, diversity and inclusion in all earth, environmental and ocean sciences spaces is incredibly valuable to us striving to conduct the best science possible.
So, this space will continue to be a place to discuss the public-science interface and environmental advocacy, suggesting grassroots solutions as the way forward--but will grow to focus more and more upon equal representation and involvement in the earth and ocean sciences.
From this platform I will also be launching a podcast that interviews rad women and underrepresented people in the earth and ocean sciences (in all different career stages)--to hear stories of how people from all backgrounds came to be involved in science, how they overcame adversity and to learn what their science is about. There are already some wonderful podcasts out there about women in science (potential future post?!), but this one aims to be more broadly inclusive and specific to the earth and ocean sciences.
I've already spoken with some super interesting people, and am extremely excited to share some of these incredible conversations with you in the next several months!
Stay tuned, and have an incredible rest of 2018.