WISE STUDENT : SOPHIA BUTT
These past few months our CEO, Ashley Npsewprthy has been taking part in the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) Mentorship program. It pairs together women mentors with female mentees , typically completing their undergraduate degree. This semester, she was fortunate enough to be matched with the vibrant, Sophia Butt. Sophia just completed the third year of her Biology degree at Memorial University of Newfoundland and ended her final semester with an amazing 4.0 GPA!
We asked Sophia to answer a few questions about her experience in the program and what it's like to be an up-and-coming young woman in a STEM field. Here is what she had to say...
How did you become involved in the WISE mentorship program?
I became involved in the WISE mentorship program through an ad I noticed on the MUN Biology Society webpage. I saw the ad shortly after New Years, when I had decided I was going put myself out there more and try new opportunities that I used to think I would not be good enough to do. This program also seemed really enticing because I would meet someone who has experience and knowledge in my field of study.
What was the most valuable part of having a mentor?
The most valuable part of having a mentor was being able to ask questions on what to do next. Ashley was a great mentor because not only had we both done a degree in biology at MUN, we also had both been in involved in Cheerleading. We got to bond on a personal level and I got to learn so much about her time in her undergrad, her masters, and her travels. I was often very envious because all the goals I have set for myself were the achievements she has already accomplished. Being able to talk to someone who has been in my shoes and walked the pathway I want to take was super valuable to me.
What advice would you give other young women wanting to get involved in the program?
My advice for other young women who are wanting to get involved is to take the first step. I was extremely nervous applying to the program for the first time as I had been wanting to get involved with WISE for a while. I told myself the worst that could happen is that I would not get accepted and that rejection is not a horrible thing. But luckily for me, I did get accepted and I got to have the best experience meeting Ashley and learning from her.
What is the biggest challenge you face today as a young woman studying in a STEM field?
One of the biggest challenges I've faced today as a woman in STEM is believing in myself. Often times I think I won't be able to handle the harder courses or be able to take on daunting challenges because I believe there is less expectation for a woman to enter into a STEM field. As I've come to learn throughout my degree, I can handle the challenges and taking on new opportunities. Often times when I put myself out there and try something new, it almost always has positive outcomes and gives me even more experience that I can use for later in life. Programs like WISE mentorship give me opportunities to try something new and give me confidence that I can accomplish my goals and more.
Why do you think it's important for women to be involved in STEM?
I believe is it important for women to be involved in STEM because every perspective matters. Often times like-minded individuals will try to tackle a problem and will come to a solution, but when we add people with different perspectives we can potentially come up with a better solution or perhaps a more efficient way to get the job done. When women of all backgrounds and experiences enter into a STEM field we can improve those jobs and the results they give trickles down into the younger generation and gives them a platform to make their contribution in the future. When we are more accepting of all people into a variety of careers we can be more inclusive and help create a stronger world.
We couldn't agree more Sophia! If you are interested in getting involved with WISE or their many amazing programs visit their website by clicking the button below.