Diversity & Inclusion in OSA


The Optical Society believes that every individual in the optics and photonics field is entitled to a work or research environment that is safe and inclusive. That’s why OSA develops programs and initiatives that support a more diverse profession.

In the course of my career, I came out as a transgender woman. The transition was not easy, but going to networking events offered by OSA have helped me to get a better feel for navigating the professional world as a transwoman and increased my confidence in the person that I am today.
Willa Rawlinson

Diversity and Inclusion with OSA

Kimmy Cushman talks about the need for diversity in science--OSA Stories

OSA Student Member Kimmy Cushman, SUNY Oneonta, USA, shares her perspective on why diversity is important in not only optics and photonics, but in science in general.

Elsa Garmire talks about her entry into the world of Optics and Photonics--OSA Stories

1993 OSA President and OSA Fellow Elsa Garmire, Dartmouth College, looks back on the path that led her to having Charles Townes as her advisor in graduate school.

Ajanta Barh talks about a professor who inspired her to study optics and its boost to her confidence--OSA Stories

Ajanta Barh, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, India, shares the story of how one professor encouraged her to get into the field of optics.

Joshua Burrow enjoys the art of problem solving in his work--OSA Stories

OSA Student member Joshua Burrow, University of Dayton, USA, likes engineering new things on the spot to problem solve.

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Community Resources

When I first became an OSA member, there were very few female members at the time. This was when the women’s movement was in full swing and those who believed in it went out of their way to make new opportunities available for women. It was through scientists I met through OSA that I received recommendation letters that helped me to ultimately become a tenured, full-time professor.
Elsa Garmire