A Houston chemist aims to showcase career paths for Black girls in science, engineering, technology and math (STEM) fields, particularly in the cosmetic industry, through her new initiative, Black to the Lab, according to an article from Houstonia. The brainchild of Kristen Wells-Lewis, Black to the Lab is an educational kit designed to teach young Black girls about STEM’s impact in the cosmetics industry.
According to Houstonia, the lack of representation for Black women in beauty was exposed in the summer of 2020 when Sharon Chuter, the founder of Uoma Beauty, challenged cosmetic brands to reveal workforce statistics. Women of color make up only about 5% of the current science and engineering workspace, according to the article, citing numbers from the National Science Board. The project, which is still in its infancy, offers introductory science-level experiments like hands-on training in the art of creating products like lip gloss and body scrubs. Each kit contains supplies like lab badges, safety goggles, beakers and syringes.
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