Name: Kiara Whittle
Job Title/Job Duties: Research Coordinator & Scientist
Company: North Shore Hebrew Academy High School
Who Is Kiara Whittle? Kiara Whittle is a Brooklyn native and a chemist. She is an alumna of the illustrious Clark Atlanta University which cemented her passion for chemistry that helped her build her career. She is passionate about science and HBCU advocacy. Kiara is especially involved in STEM outreach and engaging minority children to get them interested in pursuing STEM careers and choosing HBCUs. She works with two non-profit organizations Letters to a Pre-Scientist and Seeds of Fortune that helps her accomplish both missions. She is passionate about science and HBCU advocacy. Kiara is especially involved in STEM outreach and engaging minority children to get them interested in pursuing STEM careers and choosing HBCUs. She works with a nonprofit organization Letters to a Pre-Scientist that helps her accomplish both missions.
Kiara has also begun pursuing a Masters of Public Health in hopes of getting into infectious disease study, surveillance, and control to help bring better treatment options to minority communities. It has always been important to Kiara to close the gaps in the Black community with science and health. Currently, Kiara works at a high school in Great Neck as a Research Coordinator. Her main focus is helping the school develop its research science program to create an exemplary program that encourages students to pursue STEM careers. Kiara strives to encourage kids to explore science more and prides herself on being part of the representation in showing that scientists can make a difference and still be cool.
Special Awards: UNCF x EE Just Society honoree for being a Black life scientist and NSLS National Honors Society
Specialized Training/Education: Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and a Master of Public Health
How did you choose to pursue this field? My grandparents and parents encouraged me and my talents in science. In high school, I had a great chemistry teacher that influenced me to major in chemistry.
Who was your inspiration or role model that guided you to this field? My inspiration was my family.
Did you always have the desire to work in this field? Yes, I've always wanted to be a scientist.
What do you love most about your job? I love that the research I do contributes to helping people.
What has been the most rewarding aspect of your job or career? The most rewarding aspect of my career has been seeing how much of an impact I am making on the younger generation.
What things would you change about your job? I would love to see more Black women in STEM.
What has been the most difficult or disappointing aspect of your job? The most difficult part of my job is dealing with imposter syndrome.
How have you combated the stigma of being a "woman of color" in STEM? I've always prided myself on being a hard worker and breaking any stigmas. I have a great support system that always has my back and uplifts me.
What tips would you offer for anyone thinking about entering into your profession? Build community, work hard, and always believe in yourself.
What advice would you give your younger self about your career journey as a "woman of color" working in a predominantly white, male-dominated field? It won't always be easy, but you deserve a space in all rooms.
Can you provide some words of wisdom to young ladies thinking about entering a STEM field as a career choice? You will always belong.
What is your favorite Quote? How do you apply this to your life?
Find a way or make one.
This is the motto from my alma mater and I say it every time I need encouragement.
What are your future goals related to your career? My future goal is to win a Nobel Peace Prize and to help discover a long-lasting cure for some diseases that don't have any cure yet.
What are some interesting facts about yourself that you would like to share? I'm a black belt, I like video games, and I enjoy traveling.
What are the best ways to reach you if anyone has further questions? firstname.lastname@example.org and (718) 440-6142
Are you available for speaking engagements? Yes
Links to your website and social media:
Instagram- @ki_thechemist (my portfolio is under construction)