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Our Mission and Values

Our Mission

Building a community of supportive networks for the development, retention, and promotion of women in the sciences. ​

Our Values

We believe women in the sciences includes any person identifying as a woman who works, studies, or aspires to be in a science-related field.

We create programming that is focused on professional and personal development, cross-career mentoring, networking, community building, and outreach and education.

We promote healthy and productive environments for identifying and addressing issues specific to women in the sciences, encouraging dialogue that highlights and embraces diversity across all scientific careers.

We offer support and real-life guidance for navigating a balanced scientific career path and provide a platform for women to learn from one another’s experiences.

We foster creative and critical thinking to positively influence policies related to women and to science.

We engage younger generations to increase awareness of opportunities for female scientists and provide role models to increase visibility of women in STEM-related fields.

We expect participants in our events to be respectful to our community and follow our code of conduct.

Our Group

 The WIS Portland group began in the fall of 2012 as a group of graduate students and post-doctoral fellows at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) who were motivated by a mutual cause – create better career training and mentoring opportunities specifically designed for women at our academic biomedical research institution. 

Our first goal was to remedy the lack of information or formal policy for graduate students’ parental leave. With strong support from our faculty mentor and Associate Dean for Graduate Studies, Dr. Allison Fryer, a formal policy was passed by Graduate Council in spring 2013 that describes academic adjustments so that parents can focus on their family for 8 weeks following the birth or adoption of a child. This policy applies to all men and women in OHSU School of Medicine graduate programs.

Feeding off of the energy from this early accomplishment, our group has continued to develop well-attended programming and build relationships with scientists and science lovers throughout the Portland area. We offer programming related to career development, networking, outreach, and advocacy, all with the goal of engaging and strengthening women in STEM professions. All of our activities are developed and planned by our dedicated group of volunteer steering committee members.

Getting Involved

All of our activities are developed and planned by our dedicated group of volunteer steering committee members. We are always looking for motivated people from the greater Portland area, especially if you have specific programming ideas you would like to propose. A great way to learn more about how to get involved or pitch your ideas is to attend one of our steering committee meetings. Our monthly meetings are open to all, please contact us if you would like more information.