Events & Activities

The RTG organizes various events in the framework of women's advancements
activities, some of which will be summarized here.

Women in scientific subjects, especially in physics and engineering sciences, are still underrepresented. Thus the number of women at higher academic positions is still low. Due to this one of the major goals of the Research Training Group (RTG) "Models of Gravity" is to strongly encourage young women to aspire an academic career in physics.

In cooperation with the unit Gender Equality/Antidiscrimination (which also supports the plan m (mentoring in science) (http://www.uni-bremen.de/chancengleichheit/plan-m-mentoring-in-science.html) of the University Bremen and the Frauenbeauftragten of the University Oldenburg we identified mainly three areas of activities:

PhD Students

  • Availability of child care facility
  • Parents can spend a certain time at home which will be paid ("Bundeselterngeld– und –elternzeitgesetz (BEEG)")
  • Child care for speakers and PhD students at the place of the scientific event
  • Install a professionally guided peer group of the female PhD students
  • Networking with female PhD students of other graduate schools or research groups
  • Participate in the MINT-Coaching program (www.mint-coaching.uni-bremen.de)  with emphasis on decisions after the PhD
  • Encourage female PhD students to participate in special events for women in science, e.g. Frauentagung DPG

We are active in the organisation of summer schools for female pupils and students where the courses are given by the female PhD students of our RTG. They will be who should be rewarded with extra financial support for this additional activity. We provide for

Students

and for

Pupils

06. October 2014


Female physicists deliver insight into their management of career and private life

The RTG "Models of Gravity" hosted a "Role Model Meeting" for which female
physicists in advanced stages of a research career at university or other research institutions were invited to talk about their life in academia. The speakers came from di erent countries and have abundant experience in professional research in and outside of Germany. Each of them gave a talk on their background and development as a researcher, spoke about career paths and the choices that led them to do research in their respective elds.
Invited were Ass.-Prof. Dr. Sera Marko (University of Amsterdam), Dr. Maria
A.Papa (MPI for Gravitational Physics, Hannover), PD Dr. S. Britzen (MPI for
Radioastronomy, Bonn), and Dr. Genevieve Parmentier (University of Heidelberg). The meeting was held to provide an opportunity for female students and postdocs in the early stages of their career to meet women in physical research with several years of professional experience, who are now on senior researcher or permanent positions, learn about their experiences and interact in an informal environment.
In addition to the talks of each of the invited speakers, a public panel discussion was hold with the title "Are women contributing enough to their own career advancement?", lead by Ass.-Prof. Dr. Betti Hartmann (Universidade Federal do Esprito Santo).

Vernetzungstreffen für Wissenschaftlerinnen des Graduiertenkollegs 1620 „Models of Gravity“

Erstmals fanden sich am 27. und 28. Juli Wissenschaftlerinnen des Graduiertenkollegs „Models of Gravity“ zu einem Vernetzungstreffen in Osnabrück zusammen. Ziel des aus Gleichstellungsmitteln finanzierten Treffens war es, wichtige Aspekte für eine erfolgreiche Hochschulkarriere zu verdeutlichen und dabei mögliche Hürden für Frauen und Strategien zu deren Überwindung in den Blick zu nehmen. Organisiert von Dr. Dominika Konikowska (Post-Doc und Frauenbeauftragte im Graduiertenkolleg) und Henriette Ullmann (Mitarbeiterin der Arbeitsstelle Chancengleichheit/Antidiskriminierung der Universität Bremen), war das Treffen für die teilnehmenden 8 Doktorandinnen, 4 Post-Docs und 2 Professorinnen ein voller Erfolg.

Den Kern des Treffens bildete ein Karriereplanungsworkshop mit der aus Zürich angereisten Trainerin Dr. Monika Clausen. Ihr Workshop vermittelte den Teilnehmerinnen, dass die wissenschaftliche Leistung nicht der einzig wichtige Faktor einer akademischen Karriere ist. In einem außerordentlich abwechslungsreichen Programm aus Vortrag, Gruppenarbeiten und Übungen wurde deutlich, dass auch die Sichtbarkeit im universitären Umfeld, die Reflexion über individuelle Stärken und Ziele sowie Netzwerke eine wichtige Rolle spielen. 
Darüber hinaus bot das Treffen den Teilnehmerinnen die Gelegenheit, sich untereinander besser kennenzulernen und zu vernetzen. Mit der Physik-Professorin May-Britt Kallenrode, Vizepräsidentin der Universität Osnabrück, war zudem eine Fachfrau eingeladen, die Workshop-Fragen zu Karriereplanung und Mentoring gern aufnahm und vor dem Hintergrund ihrer eigenen Erfahrung näher beleuchtete. 
Alle Teilnehmerinnen waren vollauf begeistert von diesem Treffen. Insbesondere die vielseitige Gestaltung des Workshops wurde gelobt. „Uns wurde weniger grundlegend Neues beigebracht, aber der Kurs hat geholfen, das Wissen über die Funktionsweise der Universität zu sortieren und Schwerpunkte neu zu setzen.“ Die Trainerin, die nie zuvor so viele Physikerinnen auf einem Haufen erlebt hat, war besonders von dem Engagement und der konzentrierten Arbeitsweise der Teilnehmerinnen angetan. Um die Synergieeffekte des Workshops langfristig zu nutzen, sind weitere Treffen und Workshops für die Frauen des Graduiertenkollegs geplant.

MINTIA Club event at ZARM - 2010

MINTIA is a club for female teenagers who are interested in sciences, mathematics and technics. It encourages young women to study so called MINT subjects, mathematics, computer, natural or engineering sciences and organizes several events, information days and excursions. In the first curriculum in 2010 the MINTIA club focused on aerospace.

On Wednesday, the 13th of October, employees of the “Zentrum für Raumfahrt und Mikrogravitation”, ZARM, realized an event for MINTIA club members. 8 Girls, age 13 to 15, visited the drop tower institute to get an insight of the work of the fundamental gravity group and the space group. First the young women got a guided tour through several of the laboratories and the operating cycles in the drop tower were shown. Another highlight on the agenda was a simulation of a drive of a mars rover. Radio controlled mini cars equipped with W-lan cameras were cruised by the girls who could just see the path of their RC cars via a screen. In this way the young women should get an idea, which problems arise maneuvering a space probe or a vehicle on another planet due to the big distances in space and the finite speed of light.
Several small lectures (15-20 min) were held on the following topics:

- Astronomy: The structure of the solar system, planets, galaxies, distances in space.
- Relativity: Length contraction, time delay, basic principles of exotic objects like black holes.
- Astronautics: Controlling space probes or roboters in outer space or on other planets and the basic ideas of rocket propulsion.

At the end the pupils built their own water rockets and later launched them outside. At the end of the event the girls enjoyed competing with each other which of their rockets accomplished the longest flight distance. An article on the event can be found on the ZARM Website (in German): "Raketenstart am Fallturm statt Ferien auf dem Ponyhof" (http://www.zarm.uni-bremen.de/tree/zarm/news-zarm/article/raketenstart-am-fallturm-statt-ferien-auf-dem-ponyhof.html). Other events in cooperation with the MINTIA Club of the university Bremen are contemplated! MINTIA is a club for female pupils who are interested in scientific, mathematical or technical subjects.

See for more information www.mintia.uni-bremen.de.