“Put in the time and effort because hard work does pay off.”

Brittan Steffel, marine biology ’16, is currently pursuing her masters and researching the effects of climate change in Antartica. 

Tell us a little bit about yourself?

I am from Minnesota but came to Florida because I love the ocean. I am currently doing research for my Master’s about how climate change is affecting seafloor animals in Antarctica.

What inspired you to pursue a STEM education and career?

The oceans are essential to many aspects of human life, but we often don’t realize how our actions impact them. I wanted to study something that would help understand what these impacts are.

What do think are some of the most shared/common challenges women in STEM fields encounter?

All scientists share the challenges of needing to be a hard workers and great problem solvers.

How have you overcome obstacles/challenges as a woman in STEM?

As a student and researcher I have met many challenges, but try to learn from them and move on.

Knowing what you know now, what advice you would give your younger self?

Put in the time and effort because hard work does pay off.

What one takeaway would you want to impart on a young woman thinking of pursuing an education/career in STEM?

Go for it, girl. Why not?

What is an aspect of being a woman in STEM you were surprised to discover?

There is a lot of support out there, and people want to help you succeed. I was surprised how many role models I have found.

In your experience, what are the top things leaders could do to encourage more young women to enter STEM fields?

I think all young people can be encouraged to enter a STEM field by experiencing what they could do. For me, going to marine science summer camp confirmed early that this was what I wanted to do.

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