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Portrait Prof. Claudia Traidl-Hoffmann
Helmholtz Munich | ©Micha Pawlitzki Photography
Director of the Institute of Environmental Medicine (IEM)

Prof. Claudia Traidl-Hoffmann

"Initially, science was to help me become a dermatologist, but it became passion. Now I integrate my patients’ issues directly into high-profile science and translate our research directly into innovative treatment and prevention.
Women scientists have to believe in the possible and focus on opportunities. Love your work and look for support: for strong networks and positive role models. What we need are innovative options to drive careers and research forward in order to face the challenges of our time."

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Henriette Uhlenhaut
Helmholtz Munich | Matthias Tunger Photodesign
Director of the Institute of Diabetes and Endocrinology

Prof. Nina Henriette Uhlenhaut

'What you do makes a difference. You have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.' — Dr Jane Goodall

"I would love to encourage aspiring male and female scientists to keep experimenting, keep being curious, and keep making the world and Helmholtz Munich a better place."

Porträt Marie Standl
Helmholtz Munich | Matthias Tunger Photodesign
Head of Research Group Allergic Disease Epidemiology

Dr. Marie Standl

"To enjoy the amazing privilege of working alongside so many inspiring, brilliant women, is something to celebrate.
Together we are expanding our knowledge of disease development, enabling more effective disease prevention."

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Eleftheria Zeggini
©Jan Roeder
Director of the Institute of Translational Genomics

Prof. Eleftheria Zeggini

"I could not imagine a better environment in which women in science are encouraged to thrive than Helmholtz Munich."

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Helmholtz Munich | ©Almut Barden
Principal Investigator "One Health" at Pioneer Campus

Dr. Lara Urban

"We desperately need more women and other underrepresented scientists in order to challenge the status quo and reduce pervasive biases in our current science evaluation and communication system."

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Maria Keller Porträt Foto
Helmholtz Munich | ©Konstanze Julich-Gruner
PostDoc at Clinical Obesity Research Group

Dr. Maria Keller

"In science researchers tend to take the path of least resistance, but if you want to achieve something as a woman, you should also learn to knock on closed doors.”

Prof. Dr. Erika von Mutius
Helmholtz Munich / Matthias Tunger
Department Head of the Environmental Health Center

Prof. Erika von Mutius

"I am a physician scientist and want to understand why certain children but not others become sick. Many, many drawbacks exist in science from denied grants to declined publications to contradicting research findings. As a scientist one needs perseverance and passion for the work. A bottle neck is still child care and the reduced speed of progress of the work because of children. These issues must be taken into consideration in all promotion activities."

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EH6A8082_Konstanze Julich-Gruner
© Helmholtz Munich | Matthias Kern
Head of Institute´s Management of the Helmholtz Institute of Metabolic, Obesity and Vascular Research

Dr. Konstanze Julich-Gruner

"I grew up in a science-friendly family and never had the feeling that there are any limits for me just because I am woman. With this (self-)awareness and my fascination for molecules and how they can be directed to create new molecules led me to study chemistry and pursued a career in science. In my experience you need support, encouragement and mentoring throughout your career to get a clearer picture of where you want to go."

Laura Martens Foto
©Leon Hetzel
PhD @Helmholtz Munich in Fabian Theis and Julien Gagneur’s group

Laura Martens

"My passion for physics and biology led me to become a scientist. The collaborative nature of working at a scientific institution presents both challenges and fulfilling rewards. And truly, having a diverse group of role models makes a big difference! That's why I am very excited to be a part of the STEM-Tisch, where we're working to inspire and empower more women in STEM through our Inspirational Women Series."

More on Helmholtz Munich STEM-Tisch
20211209_Prof_Protzer_Astrid Eckert-110
© Astrid Eckert, TU Muenchen
Director, Institute of Virology (VIRO)

Prof. Dr. Ulrike Protzer

“Being a scientist is one of the most rewarding professions I can think of. It allows you to ask important questions, creatively design the best experiments to address these question and help to find the truth – in a data driven fashion and unrestricted in your thinking! Science does not ask for your gender, ethnicity or religion – it just asks for the most clever thinkers. That is a great opportunity for all women to show-case their abilities and talents!"

Juli Schnabel_Zuschnitt
Matthias Tunger Photodesign
Director of Institute of Machine Learning in Biomedical Imaging

Prof. Dr. Julia Anne Schnabel

“Learning never stops – as a scientist, one discovers new things every day that need to be understood and made sense of. Working in the medical imaging field is particularly gratifying for me as it fulfills an important societal purpose – and can be very nicely illustrated. More motivating for me though is to work with students and early career researchers and accompany them on their own journey.
Women choosing science subjects in their education and university should be normalised, rather than be regarded as outliers. Further support mechanisms can come from mentors truly championing them, or funding schemes targeted specifically at women scientists. Funders in fact play a major role here, if they would mandate equality (as well as diversity and inclusion) requirements from host institutions."

To Julia´s Page
Helmholtz Munich | Petra Nehmeyer
Postdoc at Institute of Diabetes Research IDF

Dr. Sarah Schmidt

"Since I can remember I was truly interested in discovering and exploring everything around me and I always wanted to know and understand why things are like they are. Becoming a scientist was the logical consequence of my curiosity. For me it’s not only about discovering and understanding but also about a chance to help individuals in particular and the society in general with my work. The opportunity to contribute on the fight against such diseases like type 1 diabetes just doing something that I like is a driving force for me. This makes me eager to stay in research as a scientist for my future career."

Helmholtz Munich | Jan Roeder
Head of Research Unit ‘Type 1 Diabetes Immunology’

Prof. Dr. Carolin Daniel

"I have always been interested in science and my fascination for unsolved problems and open questions is still a major driving force for me. Why should this interest or fascination be related to gender? For me, the fact that women are still underrepresented in science means first of all one thing: we are losing a whole bunch of potential because half of the population, with all their talent, is not being encouraged the way they need to."

©Klinikum rechts der Isar Michael Stobrawe I Helmholtz Munich
Director of the Institute for Radiation Medicine (IRM)

Prof. Stephanie E. Combs

"Science and Medicine always were a favorite of mine; the possibility to improve patients’ life with the help of science was my main motivation to pursue a career in science. Specifically radiation medicine is a highly innovative field that offers continuously new opportunities to significantly increase the quality of life and the overall survival rate for patients with a cancer diagnosis."

Guelcin Abbaszade
Helmholtz Munich | ©Petra Nehmeyer
Equal Opportunities Officer

Dr. Gülcin Abbaszade

"Natural phenomena have always interested me as a child. When I saw how lightning is created in physics class, I knew I wanted to be a scientist. As a young mother, reconciling a career and a family is a challenge. That's why we need family-friendly workplaces. It is important to develop a strategy against the "leaky pipeline". We need more support and mentoring for women scientists. To actively support this, I became an Equal Opportunities Officer."

Prof. Dr. Annette Peters
Helmholtz Munich | Matthias Tunger Photodesign
Director of the Institute of Epidemiology

Prof. Annette Peters

"I am really grateful that I had strong mentors who actively supported me during my entire career. Thus, it is very important to me to provide this support. In our institute, there are many excellent female scientists that I am pleased to promote, resulting in great career paths and outstanding scientific results for everyone.

We need all great scientists, male and female, to overcome the current crises and challenges together and promote public health!"

Porträt Lenche Chakievska
Helmholtz Munich | Petra Nehmeyer
PostDoc Institute of Diabetes Research

Dr. Lenche Chakievska

“The biggest challenge in my scientific career was writing my PhD thesis and defense while raising a just born baby.”

Helmholtz Munich | Matthias Tunger Photodesign
Head of Research Unit “Apoptosis of Hematopoietic Stem Cells”

Prof. Irmela Jeremias

"As a clinician treating children with cancer, I became a scientist because I want to improve cancer care over the long term. I enjoy science because it requires intense, lifelong learning, constant intellectual curiosity, and the ability to respond to the unexpected. To enable gender-independent careers in the context of family, I believe we need true equality for all genders in all areas of life - at work and at home."

Anastasiia Andreeva
PostDoc AG Applied Vascular Research

Dr. Olga Bondareva

"Since very young age I was fascinated by nature and always wanted to figure out why things work one way and not the other. Luckily, I found science to be the best profession that allows my curiosity and passion to thrive and be useful for the society.
A bit more than a year ago I became a mother, and this new role has changed every aspect of my life. I love being a mom and see how my son grows and discovers new things every day - it reminds me how to ask unexpected questions and find a different perspective. However, it is extremely challenging to keep up with good work and be full-time mom in a foreign country without any family support.
Female scientists are a rare kind, and they face difficult choices every day by juggling family, work, and hopefully some self-care time. Unfortunately, one has to sacrifice one or another, because it is simply not possible to do it all. I wish there was more support and opportunities for working moms including child-minding services with longer working hours and meet-and-talk support groups for mental health and self-care.
P.S.: Special shout-out to all science moms out there: You are AMAZING!

Porträt Marion Jasmin
Helmholtz Munich | ©Warren Peireira
Principal Investigator

Dr. Marion Jasnin

"Early in my physics studies, I discovered the world of biology, and the endless possibilities of addressing fundamental unanswered questions through experimental design. This led me to explore the cell across scales using different physics methods, from neutron scattering to cryo-electron tomography. I have been fortunate to meet several mentors who have inspired and supported my research journey, which led me to this amazing opportunity at Helmholtz Munich."

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