I'm new, too

otunnela at ktl.fi otunnela at ktl.fi
Wed Feb 15 18:09:54 EST 1995

Dear readers of this newsgroup.
I finally have an access to the networks and these past two days
I have read your articles with interest.
As it seems that the majority of you are Americans, I thought I'd
put in a couple of lines regarding recent discussions to demonstrate
that the faraway country of Finland also provides a supply of female
In fact, in biosciences we are a majority. I just got my PhD in 
biochemistry and started my postdoc. In this department of the
Natl Inst of Public Health we are 24 females and four males, all
researchers and technicians counted in. Of the four males, one is the
head of dept. My previous workplace had a similar ratio. I would not 
mind a few more guys, but then again, an almost-all-female group
functions very nicely, thank you.

Also, the discussion on whether to change one's name hit home with me.
I got married last summer and changed my last name. Almost everybody
was surprised! My dad and my old boss seem to be among the most 
dissatisfied. But after a short while I got used to this new identity
and am now quite happy with it. However, after reading this newsgroup,
I did decide to send my last paper on my previous research subject
under a hyphenated name, that way (I think) anyone who's really 
interested will find a connection.

so, what else? Around here we dress in jeans and flat shoes - or in
dress and pumps if need be, hold our seminars and write our papers
in English (otherwise speaking Finnish), earn awfully little (in
academia), and get our PhD's rather late (I'm 31, and I'm young for
a PhD!). And being a scientist and female is still a combination
that is rarely taken for granted, however numerous we are.

Have courage - and faith in what you do, folks!


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