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Elizabeth Ann Kirman

STEM/Science Instructor at Harrisburg University and Lower Dauphin High School

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Girls, accept that you can achieve any goal you desire.

WHAT DO YOU DO?

I have the best job in the world! I facilitate students in designing and creating prototypes to solve real-world problems and present their work in local, state, national, and international competitions.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THIS FIELD?

I remember clearly when I knew I would be a scientist. I was exploring and discovered fossils on the Appalachian Mountains where I lived when I was 10 years old. I collected, sorted, and reorganized them by their different properties. I was classifying before I even knew that is what I was doing! From that point on, I had the desire to figure out how the natural world worked and changed over time.

WHAT DO YOU LOOK AT & THINK, "I WISH YOUNGER ME WOULD HAVE KNOWN THIS WAS POSSIBLE?"

I wish the younger me knew that one day I would find a diplodocus fossil on a dig in Montana that would end up in a museum!!

WHY DO YOU LOVE WORKING IN STEM?

I love watching my students pursue their passions. I wake up each morning knowing that I will make a difference to a student that day!

BEST ADVICE FOR NEXT GENERATION?

Girls, accept that you can achieve any goal you desire. Achieving that goal takes persistence and patience. I earned my Ph.D. the month I turned 50! You may not be able to achieve your goal in a perfect timeline, but it is possible if you do not quit.

INSPO / FUN FACT

“Be a first-rate version of yourself, not a second rate version of someone else.” – Judy Garland