To the Mothers of Science 2020 grant winners

BIST presents the second edition ‘To the Mothers of Science’ programme winners: Ten powerful women willing to improve their leadership skills to take a step forward in their careers and become a role model for future generations. The grant winners will receive individual coaching sessions, an economic stipend and networking sessions to share tricks and tips.

Gemma Aragay

Group Scientific Coordinator, Institute of Chemical Research of Catalonia (ICIQ)

Two daughters, 2 and 4 years old

“The stage of promoting your scientific career coincides with the stage of motherhood, and combining the two is difficult. Being able to share the experience with other women who are like you I think can be very enriching for all.”

Belen Ballesteros

Leader of the Electron Microscopy Unit, Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2)

Two kids, 6 and 8 years old

“The coaching offered by this programme will serve me to strengthen my leadership ability and give me tricks to improve my work. Programmes like this one give visibility to women, allowing them to become role models. Our experience demonstrates there are women who can work in science and be mothers, and it is normal.

Mary Cano

Senior Researcher, Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2)

Two kids, 4 years and 10 months old

“Being a woman and a working mother makes the conciliation very complicated. My concern was to be able to improve my skills, to be more concentrated, to have a more balanced life. And I’m sure that this programme will be very beneficial. Science continue being a men’s world. In my institute there are few women researchers, but we are powerful!”

Iliana López-Soldado

Research Associate, Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona)

A 12-year old daughter

“There is a concern to find aid for women, in all sectors, but especially in science, where you have to spend so many hours to meet the objectives. A programme like this is really necessary and I applaud BIST for organising it.

Irene Marco

Postdoctoral Researcher, Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC)

A 1-year old daughter

“I was worried about self-confidence. I am now in the phase of being able to apply for principal investigator or group leader positions and I realise that sometimes I am the one who holds back before start. The coaching sessions will be ideal because they will help me to be more sure of myself and have the confidence to take a step forward.”

Claire Morgan

Postdoctoral Researcher, Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG)

A 2-year old daughter

“To inspire next generations it is not necessary to stand in a podium and speak up. You must just to be there, being a woman that have kids and showing to the people you can do it.”

Sarah-Lena Offenburger

Postdoctoral Researcher, Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG)

A 10-month old son

“The networking between all the participants will be super-beneficial, to know tips and ticks, and feel a little bit more sure that you are not the only one having these concerns, these thoughts.”

Malgorzata Siudek

Postdoctoral Researcher, Institute for High Energy Physics (IFAE)

Two sons, 2 and 7 years old

“I’m looking forward the coaching programme. I hope it will give me more strength to go with the path I want, to develop my skills and become a pioneer in my field.”

Núria Torras

Postdoctoral Researcher, Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC)

A 4-year old daughter

“The world of research is complex, especially when you don’t have anyone by your side. You have to be struggling because they don’t understand you. You feel that you are alone and the fact of having this little recognition tells you that you are not going on a wrong way.”

Ewelina Wajs

Postdoctoral Researcher, The Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)

A 3-year old son

“Usually I can’t apply to go to exciting scientific meetings unless they happen in my city. You feel it as a real limitation. But thanks to this grant I will not have to resign myself. I couldn’t stop feeling guilty because I had a child and a maternity leave. And I don’t know how much it is paranoia and how much it is true.”

BIST centres

Institutional Members of the Board of Trustees