While some of us are celebrating Pi Day by … eating pie, female meteorologists are taking a more meaningful approach. Across the country, local weather nerds are banding together to spread a message to encourage women to pursue careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields — and they’re doing it through fashion. Today female meteorologists are showing up to work in blue, or in that dress — the $23 colorblock dress from Homeyee that went viral after folks noticed that so many meteorologists were wearing it — in order to make a statement.
A few meteorologists have shared photos of themselves rocking the dress on social media, explaining their mission and raising awareness for the cause. It’s one that’s near and dear to Jennifer Ketchmark, morning meteorologist for WCPO in Cincinnati. “Growing up, female meteorologists were few and far between on my local TV screen. I didn’t even realize that my passion for weather as a child was a realistic and achievable career until I went to college,” she told Yahoo Style via a Facebook message. “I want young women like myself who are self-entitled ‘nerds’ in math, science, technology, and engineer to embrace their inner nerd and run with it. Reach for the stars!”
Women are underrepresented in STEM. According to Million Women Mentors, an organization that aims to use mentorship in order to advance the interest of women and girls in STEM fields, women make up 26 percent of the STEM workforce, even though they make up about half of the overall workforce.
The Homeyee dress is so favored by women in local news TV because of its flattering but professional look and its reasonable price point. Many women who work at local news stations are responsible for buying their own wardrobes, which is part of the reason why the dress became so popular. According to WCPO Cincinnati, a discussion in a private Facebook group for female meteorologists was the start of the initiative.
“The dress symbolizes the community of lady broadcast mets who support and encourage each other,” Bree Smith, a meteorologist for WTVF in Nashville, said. “Wearing the dress or the color blue is our collective effort to extend this support and encouragement to all women in STEM and young girls we hope will pursue STEM.”
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