Home TEDx Talks Intersectionality will save the future of science | Shawntel Okonkwo | TEDxUCLA

Intersectionality will save the future of science | Shawntel Okonkwo | TEDxUCLA

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If we want science and technology to truly change the world as it certainly can, we need to understand how overlapping forms of discrimination leave some people and perspectives out, and what it might look like to recognize and welcome inclusive participation. Shawntel Okonkwo is an award-winning Ph.D. Candidate in Molecular Biology and Gene Regulation at UCLA and the founder and creative director of wokeSTEM, a creative and afro-futuristic entity that uniquely intersects social justice, STEM and science communication​ while centering people of color. Shawntel’s unique background in being a first-generation born Nigerian-American woman, creative artist, Molecular Biologist, and public advocate has uniquely colored her trajectory through adversity and life’s lows to success as a critical ideator & truth-teller passionately pushing the envelope on conventional thinking and empathy in STEM. Shawntel Okonkwo is a PhD Candidate in Molecular Biology and Gene Regulation at UCLA and the founder and creative director of wokeSTEM, a creative and afro-futuristic consultancy that intersects social justice, STEM and science communication, while uniquely centering people of color. Shawntel’s unique background in being a first-generation born Nigerian-American, dancer, musician, artist, Molecular Biologist, and entrepreneur has uniquely colored her trajectory through adversity and life’s lows to success. She has secured over $500k in prestigious scholarships, fellowships (such as the National Science Foundation’s GRFP and the Ford Predoctoral Fellowship) and awards ranging from scientific research at UCSF to public speaking to dance. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at https://www.ted.com/tedx

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