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Traveling the World from my Kitchen Chair: Experiences from a 2020 OSA Ambassador

I applied to become an OSA Ambassador and was granted that honor in 2020. I was immediately drawn to the OSA ambassador program as it provided me the opportunity to meet and motivate students and young professionals around the world by joining and leading them through technical discussions, professional development webinars, identifying opportunities for increased diversity and inclusion...

Added:23 Jul 2020


The All-Virtual OSA Advanced Photonics Congress is a Wrap!

The first all-virtual OSA Advanced Photonics Congress has come to a successful conclusion. More than 3,700 registrants from 84 countries joined us for the congress held 13 – 16 July 2020 to engage with distinguished plenary speakers, presenters and volunteers.

Added:20 Jul 2020


Diversity & Inclusion Advocacy Recognition: Reflections from the 2019 Winners

The Diversity & Inclusion Advocacy Recognition was created to acknowledge an individual and company, university, agency or organization that is working to foster greater appreciation, advancement and celebration of diversity and inclusion in the optics and photonics community. To apply or submit a nomination, fill out the application/nomination portal before the deadline of 13 July. In...

Added:08 Jul 2020


#ShutDownSTEM Day

The Optical Society (OSA) is joining academic institutions and science and engineering societies in the grassroots movement #ShutDownSTEM on Wednesday, 10 June in support of Black Lives Matter. We ask you to join us in this day-long focus on racism in our community through education, action, and healing.

Added:09 Jun 2020


Celebrating Women in Science

On 11 February 2020, the world celebrated the International Day of Women and Girls in Science – a day dedicated to inspiring girls and engaging women in all STEM fields. The OSA Foundation (OSAF) was honored to once again participate in these efforts by providing 14 grants to OSA Student Chapters in Argentina, Brazil, China, India, Italy, Mexico, Peru, Senegal, Spain, United Kingdom and...

Added:08 Mar 2020


OSA Mourns the Loss of Katherine Johnson – a True Pioneer

The Optical Society (OSA) and the STEM community pay tribute to NASA mathematician, pioneer for racial and gender equality and “Hidden Figure”, Katherine G. Johnson who died on 24 February 2020.

Added:02 Mar 2020


Celebrating International Volunteer Day and Wrapping up my Year as OSA President

On this International Volunteer Day, The Optical Society (OSA) graciously thanks all our volunteers who dedicate countless time and effort to advancing OSA’s mission. Volunteerism is invaluable to the Society and helps foster a strong global optics and photonics community. Furthermore, association with OSA leadership is a lifelong privilege, and as the 2019 OSA President, I look forward...

Added:05 Dec 2019


The Optical Society Visits National Institute of Standards & Technology and University of Colorado Boulder to Discuss Diversity and Inclusivity

October is Global Diversity Awareness Month and at The Optical Society (OSA), we proudly support and encourage diverse and inclusive membership and programming. As the Senior Director of Diversity, Inclusion & Volunteer Cultivation, I had the opportunity to visit the National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST) in Boulder, CO as well as JILA at the University of Colorado Boulder...

Added:18 Oct 2019


Diversity: colors of unique thoughts, beauty of a painting

What is diversity and why  is it important for scientific communities? The Oxford Dictionary defines diversity as “a range of many people or things that are very different from each other.” If we start from this definition and try to link it to our society, we can see why diversity is vital for the healthy development of a scientific environment. 

Added:18 Jul 2019


The 15th International Gathering of Optics and Photonics Educators: ETOP2019

Since 1988, educators from around the world have met every two years at the international ETOP (Education and Training in Optics and Photonics) conference to share and learn best practices for teaching optics and photonics . This year’s ETOP, hosted by Université Laval and the Centre d’Optique, Photonique et Laser in Québec City, Québec, Canada, was attended by over 175 educators...

Added:19 Jun 2019


OSA Leadership Conference Tackles Thorny and Complex Anti-Harassment Issue

The Optical Society’s (OSA) 2019 Leadership Conference, during a 2 April 2019 plenary session, tackled a pressing and complex subject facing scientific societies: Implementing anti-harassment policies that address sexual and gender harassment as well as bullying behaviors.

Added:02 Apr 2019


A Global, Diverse and Inclusive OSA: Challenges and Opportunities

As a researcher I travel quite often. This year in particular, was my first year as an OSA Ambassador and I had the opportunity to travel much more than usual, to places where I had never been before.  This role as OSA Ambassador has allowed me to expand my network dramatically and gave me the incredible opportunity to connect with a great number of colleagues, mostly students, around the...

Added:26 Oct 2018


100 Scientists On An Island

What do you get when you gather about 100 laser scientists on a small island? You get a lot of geeky light jokes (pun intended), learning, discussions ranging from lasers, solitons, POTUS, gender issues to new anime. All in all you get one of the best laser schools ever conducted!I was lucky to be a part of the fifth Siegman International School on Lasers in the Island of Hven, Backafallsbyn in...

Added:10 Sep 2018


Creating an Inclusive Environment in Science

Scientists come from all different cultures, backgrounds, and experiences. There is no demographic restriction to scientific study; the only thing that truly matters is one's knowledge and motivation. Ideally scientists should recognize the importance of diversity on a level that would allow it to transcend barriers other disciplines may not have the opportunity to, although in reality...

Added:11 Jul 2018


Rainbows: From Science to Activism

In 1978 Gilbert Baker created the first rainbow flag as a symbol for LGBT+ Pride. Baker wanted a flag that could be a symbol of the global LGBT+ community and he chose the rainbow because he believed the various colors were a good representation of the diversity in the community. Baker believed this natural and beautiful symbol had an undeniable power and was certain of the design from the very...

Added:05 Jul 2018


Driving Diversity, Closing the Gap: Celebrating International Day for Women and Girls in Science

The fourth industrial revolution dawns upon us and with that evokes a quintessential question, how do we, as women and girls in science, seek opportunities and be influential during this shift of science, technology and innovation? We are currently in an era where science and physical systems are fusing to develop emerging technology that is based on artificial intelligence, robotics, Internet...

Added:11 Feb 2018


Fixing the Leaky Pipeline

Dozens of industry leaders, researchers, students and other optics professionals came together at OSA’s headquarters in Washington, D.C., in the second “Global Women of Light” symposium. The all-day event, co-sponsored by the OSA Foundation and Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Entrepreneurship (WiSTEE Connect), focused on the best ways to boost the presence of...

Added:20 Sep 2017


A Woman's Place is in the Lab

As a female engineer, one becomes accustomed to being a minority: in the lecture theatre, in the graduate lab and in the workplace.  We have come a long way from the days when women scientists were an anomaly, but the number of women choosing STEM courses and careers at the undergraduate and graduate level still lags behind our male counterparts.  But to grow female representation in...

Added:24 Mar 2014