Music, crowd sound
Meg: So in 1992, the first meeting, we had--first of all we had to persuade people that there was a problem. They weren't sure there was any reason women weren't in astronomy. They thought, well, it's just because they don't want to be in astronomy.
Vera: And so I think we went to the meeting not knowing a lot about the history of women in science. And what I remember is learning, learning the history of women.
Anne: The interesting thing was that the first meeting was almost 20 years ago and we've seen a drastic change in the field in those 20 years. In that there is a much higher percentage coming out with PhDs now in astronomy and physics.
Jennifer: I look at planetary analogs, and I try and understand the microbial--the microorganisms that live in those materials. and how they have adapted.
Vera: I study how stars move in galaxies.
Meg: I actually work on black holes, supermassive black holes.
Dara: I'm particularly interested in the environ- ment of active galactic nuclei. These are the bright centers of galaxies.
Speaker: --that sense of self-confidence that comes from being in a place that supports you and says you're brilliant, you can do it I have been--Crowd questions, natural sound
Vera: This one is very different because now everybody knows the history of women. Everybody that's at the meeting knows the history and so they're much more subtle questions.
Dara: They really wanted to open it up to be a discussion of diversity and astronomy. To not just focus only on women in astronomy, but to focus on underrepresented minorities and also the numbers, the generations that are now in the work force in astronomy.
Jennifer: If you have the diversity around you, it has no impact on the work that you're doing. This is a professional environment it doesn't matter if you're black or white, a woman or a male, from one country or another. It doesn't matter. The goal is to get a job done, to learn something.
Meg: When are we done? When are we done? We're done when the demographics of the profession are the same of the demographics of the society. society we come from.