This week, we present two stories of doubt in science, from a mysterious illness to imposter syndrome.
Part 1: A sudden illness casts doubt on whether Maia Pujara will be able to finish her neuroscience PhD.
Maia Pujara received her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she developed a passion for science outreach, science communication, and promoting women and underrepresented minorities in STEM. She's a postdoc at the National Institutes of Health to study the brain regions that are critical for helping us regulate our emotions, learn about rewards, and make flexible, adaptive choices. Though focused when it comes to academic matters, Maia has always had a “breadth-over-depth” philosophy with hobbies and has so far taken up playing the guitar, playing the ukulele, radio DJ-ing, baking, mixology, palmistry, watercoloring, knitting, crocheting, ice-skating, ultimate frisbee, improv, acting, and screenwriting. Follow her on Twitter @neuro_sigh
Part 2: After growing up under humble circumstances in St. Lucia, Whitney Henry feels like an imposter in her PhD program at Harvard.
Whitney Henry is originally from the beautiful Caribbean Island of St Lucia. She relocated to the US after receiving a full presidential academic scholarship from Grambling State University where she completed her BS in Biology with a minor in Chemistry. She earned a PhD in Biological and Biomedical Sciences from Harvard University and is currently a postdoctoral associate in the lab of Dr. Robert Weinberg at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research. Her research focuses on identifying biological processes that drive tumor relapse following chemotherapy in ovarian cancer. When she is not engaged in lab, Whitney enjoys mentoring and traditional Caribbean dancing.
Shane Ortega is the first transgender person to serve openly in the military. He talks about how to interpret President Trump’s tweets banning trans people from serving in the military, explains why it’s so detrimental that Trump didn’t seek guidance f...