Dr. Adriana Bankston
Policy & Advocacy Fellow, Society for Neuroscience
Junior Member since 2014
“Having an AWIS support system has been extremely important to me as I navigate what it means to be a woman and leader in science.”
What do you think is the most important attribute that enables a woman to successfully lead a community that supports women in STEM?
Empathy is the most important attribute that enables a woman to successfully lead a community that supports other women in STEM. We have all been through more or less the same types of experiences and having a common base makes us all more relatable. In addition, men must step up and serve as allies for women and other minorities in the STEM fields to truly be considered leaders. Being aware of these issues helps us all come up with solutions as a team.
What do you aspire to accomplish in your career and why?
I am passionate about improving the biomedical research enterprise, and I aspire toward a career where I can make an impact in this area. Graduate students and postdocs need to be trained in performing high-quality, ethical science by their peers and advisors. Moreover, scientists (including women scientists) also need to be educated about resources, including career development resources, available to improve their training. Finally, advocating for and communicating to the public about what scientists (including female scientists) do is crucial to the existence of this enterprise. Throughout my career, I seek to become a strong advocate for improving biomedical research training and making the research enterprise more diverse and inclusive.
How has AWIS helped you professionally and/or personally?
Since becoming an active AWIS member, I have found a very warm and welcoming environment. Having an AWIS support system has been extremely important to me as I navigate what it means to be a woman and leader in science. Professionally, seeing women in STEM as leaders within AWIS provides strong role models to follow, both as scientists and also as resources who can discuss issues impacting women in science. I hope to inspire young female scientists to make their voices heard on issues of importance to them in the research enterprise.