Scientist Kindly Moves NASA Shirts from Boys’ Clothing Section to Girls’
All little girls are different. Whether she likes science experiments and robots or sticks to sparkles and princesses, she should get to express her interests and preferences through what she wears. Unfortunately, when it comes to clothing, girls don’t have a large range of options to choose from, with racks focusing on stereotypically girly options of butterflies, unicorns and pink, pink, pink.
One Arizona scientist was sick of only seeing diversity in the boys’ clothing section and decided to make a much-needed change to a local Target.
As reported by TODAY.com, 37-year-old associate professor Katie Hinde was searching for a Wonder Woman T-shirt when she witnessed the large gap in choice for girls’ clothing.
“Once I realized there wasn’t what I was looking for, I started to survey what was there,” she said. “And the whole time, the boys’ ‘NASA’ T-shirts were visible from nearly all of the sections I was walking through.”
Instead of simply ignoring the lack of science presence in the girls’ section, Katie decided to take matters into her own hands by giving the section a little “science pizzazz.”
“Did I just take a bunch of NASA tank tops from the boys section & put them in the girls section? Yes. Yes I did,” she captioned a Twitter photo of NASA clothing amongst the patterned girl’s clothing.
The tweet, which currently has more than 20,000 retweets and 100,000 likes, took the Internet by storm and prompted Katie to write an essay defending her decision to move the tank tops.
“Our culture reinforces limitations on children due to their sex/gender. As a scientist who works on inclusivity in academia and science, I spend a lot of time thinking about the pipeline. I am particularly concerned about the scarcity and disparity of science & science fiction oriented toys, clothes and outreach for girls,” she states in her essay.
Along with mentioning the resources girls can use to immerse themselves in science, she also emphasizes the role she thinks the opposite sex should play in supporting women in science.
“It is important for boys to see and interact with women scientists, for them to spend time with girls as capable science enthusiasts. Otherwise women are more likely to experience gendered stereotypes in college, grad school and later in their careers,” she said.
Although Katie is not a mom, she hopes retail stores will begin to make girls’ NASA shirts and other STEM clothing items accessible and at eye-level so little girls can see them.