Gender/Race in Science and Medicine

This semester has been an extremely interesting and insightful one. I am currently enrolled in two courses with similar topics; this one and a sociology course titled “Gender and Science”. I signed up for both thinking that the topic names may have been a typo as there wasn’t a very long description for either of the courses. But, I signed up anyway because the title for this course, if it was correct, seemed intriguing and I had heard that Dr. McCoy as well as Dr. Eisenberg (who teaches the sociology course) were good professors.

As it turned out, these two classes interlaced in ways that I did not see coming. The sociology course that I’m taking with Dr. Eisenberg is about the disparity between males and females in the world of science. Science is, and has always been, a very gender biased field and when viewed closely through a feminist lens, this is very evident. For example, I’m sure everyone learned the same old story for sex education in high school. The strongest sperm swims towards the egg and penetrates it and then you have a baby. In reality, this is not how the process goes at all. The egg actually seeks out sperm and “zaps” the ones that are not fit. When the egg finally finds a sperm that it likes, it makes a hole in its exterior for it to enter. I did not know that this is what actually happens, because I have been taught that the sperm was the one with all of the power in this process. This is something that is such a small part in the grand scheme of our lives, but it makes a significant impact.

I’m constantly making connections between these two courses. There are so many small things that I was completely unaware of in the world of medicine and science. And these small things add up to equal one huge problem in these two areas that I was ignorant to. Taking these two classes at the same time has really opened my mind up to so many inequalities that I was not aware of. I’m very thankful that I signed up for these courses. I feel that these two courses are really working along the GLOBE outcome goals that we have been working with this semester. I feel that I have learned valuable information that has made me more rounded as a student and individual. I will definitely encourage anyone who has the same opportunity in the future, to take it.

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