A statement from Dr. Gorkin:
As a scientist and educator, I believe it is my responsibility to promote diversity and expand access to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) careers. Diversity is critical to the health of our biomedical research enterprise because diverse teams are more effective at problem solving, and because maximizing access to education ensures a strong scientific workforce for the future. My commitment to diversity also comes from a deep personal belief in the fundamental rights to equitable treatment, access to education, and career opportunities for all. Unfortunately, racism and other socioeconomic factors inhibit equal access to STEM careers, and as a result, the scientific community is far less diverse than our society at large. I am committed to promoting diversity and counteracting forces that impede its progress. As a laboratory director, I take the following actions to foster a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment:
• Recruiting lab members from diverse backgrounds and perspectives.
• Creating a culture of communication and acceptance where team members feel respected and are comfortable expressing themselves.
• Listening to, amplifying, and advocating for team members – especially those from groups excluded from and/or underrepresented in STEM.
• Tailoring mentorship to the unique experience of each team member.
• Opposing policies and ideas that perpetuate disparities between groups defined by race, color, national origin, gender expression, family status, religious beliefs, age, disability, or sexual orientation.
• Continually educating myself about the perspectives of others, and best practices to foster inclusivity.
• Learning from my mistakes.
I value conversations and feedback on these issues. If you’d like to continue the conversation, please feel free to contact me directly via e-mail. Or if you prefer to comment anonymously, please do so, here.