From: Out in STEM
Date: March 15, 2023
Subject: oSTEM: Symposium & GMM This Wk

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Queers Read This!

How was your spring break? [reply here]

    Welcome back, we hope you had a fun spring break (or at least a very restful one)!!
[From Kevin: Well call me the 2003 live-action/animated financial failure film, Looney Tunes, because I am Back in Action! I took a break to focus on my mental health (which controversial opinion: shouldn’t be stigmatized or have those who need it, aka everyone, feel ashamed) which delayed our queer highlight, but it’s back!]

This Week

    This past Monday we had our second weekly oSTEM Study Hours at the BIC. Next week we will have regular SHs, but we are working on our first Modified Study Hours event on March 27. We will share details and gauge your availability for this at our GMM this week.
    We have also been invited to speak in the ME Department’s annual Spring Symposium about our organization, how we help underrepresented groups, and the challenges we still face in doing so. Our presentation will be part of the Year in Review with Identity-Driven Clubs session in Hopeman 224 this Friday, March 17, from 2:30-3:30 pm. We will also be at the Poster Social immediately after in the Rettner Atrium from 3:30-5:00 pm. Join us to share the love for oSTEM and network with professors showcasing their research/opportunities & other student organizations like the Society of Women Engineers, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, and Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers. For more information, see the attached flyer.
    Right after the Symposium, we will be teleporting to Genesee 308 for our highly anticipated, bi-weekly GMM, at our regular Friday from 5-6 pm schedule! We will give a quick Symposium debrief, share updates on Operation ROAR, reveal who our next speakers are for the upcoming GMMs, and go over E-Board elections for the next academic year. 

Coming Up

- 2023-24 E-Board Elections
    Thank you all for your nomination submissions for next year’s E-Board positions. The candidates and important election details will be shared at our meeting this week. 
Please expect a very short email later this week with a link to the voting form, it will remain open for a week and we will announce the results through our next GMM & newsletter. 
- Study Hours
    Regular SHs are Mondays from 1-3 pm at the BIC in Douglass Hall. Join us there to cosplay as studious scholars, munch (shoutout Ice Spice) on some BIC-provided snacks, and expand our beloved oSTEM ambiance. 
- Slack Group: Link 
    Join our Slack group for better deadline & plan development communication. Just last Sunday, we shared a power plant tour opportunity, O4U’s Round 1 deadline, and E-Board Nominations deadline. Because we refuse to flood your inbox any more than we already have, Slack lets us share opportunities with deadlines set before our Wednesday newsletters. 
Note: Link expires in 30 days.
- Website: Link
    As always, our website contains our R&O database, previous newsletters, and more pages that *continue* to be developed. If you spot any issues, our Feedback Form is always open!
On Campus
- Tau Beta Pi Engineering Office Hours: 
    Tau Beta Pi, a University engineering honor society, hosts weekly office hours to help engineering students with homework, projects, and more. Their OHs are every Sunday in Genesee 325 from 2-5 pm. 
- LLE Research w/ Dr. Shuai Zhang: 
    Dr. Shuai Zhang is looking for undergraduate research assistants to help with the High Energy Density Theory Group’s computational study of defects in materials under extreme conditions. The position requires a commitment of 4-10 hours of research a week and previous class experience in solid-state physics, quantum mechanics, physical chemistry, thermodynamics, or similar courses. For more information or application specifics, reach out to us. 
- e5 Program: Due March 16, 2023
    The e5 Program’s spring deadline is soon, the program allows students to study an extra year tuition-free and launch a project to engage in an experiential/entrepreneurial pursuit either economic or social in nature. For more information, contact them directly at or visit their website here.
Outside R&Os
- Houston Astros Internship: 
    Houston Astros Research & Development analyst group is looking for undergraduate interns to help on-site in Houston, Texas for this summer. The group studies baseball problems and is working on developing tools for initiatives across Baseball Operations. Preference will be given to students with “strong skills in computational model building, statistics, data science, mechanical modeling” or closely related areas. For more information or application specifics, reach out to us.
- Grace Hopper Celebration: Scholarships Close May 3, 2023 @ 8 pm ET
    The Grace Hopper Celebration for Women and Non-Binary Technologists offers attendees career & academic workshops, networking opportunities, and inspirational role models. They also offer scholarships to enable students, faculty, women, and non-binary technologists to attend the Celebration virtually. Read more about what a virtual attendance would look like (notably access to their Resume Database and ability to submit yours) here, and apply here.
- Sound, Vibrations, and Acoustical Engineering Position (Graduating Seniors): 
    Noise Control Engineering, LLC (NCE) is looking for a sound & vibrations/acoustics engineer to join their team in Billerica, Massachusetts. NCE is a leading engineering consulting firm with a specialization in marine and industrial noise & vibration control. Read more and apply here.
- Out For Undergrad Engineering + Digital Conferences: Round 2 Closes April 9, 2023 @ 11:59 pm PST
    Out for Undergrad’s (O4U) conferences are life-changing experiences for LGBTQ2+ college students (whether you are out or not). This all-expenses-paid conference features prominent queer speakers, mentorship discussions, and a career fair featuring companies like Clorox, Emerson, Micron, ABB, and Stantec! 
    Both Kevin & Ellie have attended the Engineering conference before, and have nothing but admiration and love for the program! O4UD/E applications are accepted in 3 rounds, with most students being accepted in Rounds 1 & 2, the Rounds are essentially semi-rolling admissions meaning you only need to apply once (not in all 3). Round 2 just opened this week and closes on April 9th, Round 3 opens right after and closes on May 7th. Get your applications in ASAP for a chance to attend, we’d love to go with as many of you as possible! <3

In The News

• Anti-Queer Bills Keep Trending Upward: Link
    The trend of legislative assault on trans people (and their right to exist) continues to expand across the nation. From Tennessee’s recent ban on “male or female impersonators” to Mississippi’s illegalization of gender-affirming care for trans minors across the board, the strategic brute-force introduction of bills has proven effective and other states are following suit, with the Oklahoma House passing a bill illegalizing gender-affirming care for minors and adults. Civil rights infringements like these are grim reminders of the persisting ignorance in the nation and a call to action for those “privileged” with the right to survival. Trans rights are human rights is a nice slogan, but worthless if not backed by action enabled by political awareness. If you’d like to follow developments around this issue, a good starter is The Trans Formation Project (Website + Instagram) which breaks down bills around the country, points to direct action, and often shares much-needed good news. 

Bio/Necropolitics (Part II): Control of Death 

French philosopher, political activist, and literary critic, Paul Michel Foucault developed several theories revolving around the dynamics of power. Foucault popularized the concept of biopolitics which looks at the relationship between life & politics, how a regulatory system administrates life. Biopolitics is complicated by its flexible definition in several political theory fields, for our application of the previous three works highlighted, we’ll look at how it describes the power a central governing body has on populations (not necessarily individuals) and their assessment of each population’s value and purpose for the whole. 
Cameroonian historian and political theorist, Joseph-Achille Mbembe (or Achille Mbembe) expanded on Foucault’s framework and developed the concept of necropolitics. While biopolitics looks at the control and maintenance of life, necropolitics looks at the control and maintenance of death, when a population has exhausted its value, has no utility, or is seen as dangerous and needing to be muted. 
- Bio/Necropolitics (Part I) Newsletter excerpt
    Continuing last Queer Highlight’s introduction of bio- and necropolitics and their application to the works we highlighted throughout February’s newsletters, Cheryl Clarke’s book Feminist Theory Reader, specifically Chapter 8 Lesbianism: An Act of Resistance, is next (finally)! There wasn’t really a right answer to that week’s poll, both political theories can apply to Clarke’s work well. That being said, the trend of Clarke’s necropolitical focus can be more prominently identified through her lived experiences across her book. 
    Clarke’s positionality as a successful Black lesbian poet, educator, and activist in 80s America was (and continues to be) a dangerous livelihood. She realizes she has no value in the eyes of the governing norms surrounding her (since she does not follow the established path bound by biopolitics) and weaponizes that queer failure (Re: Halberstam’s The Queer Art of Failure) on every front. 
    The governing body’s ideal utility for someone with a uterus is to carry life and for BIPOC individuals to remain the working-class bodies of the state. With necropolitics in mind, it’s apparent Clarke, and those like her, never had any value or utility to exhaust, with her even listing specific biopolitical regulations upheld by “a male-supremacist, capitalist, misogynist, racist, homophobic, imperialist culture, such as that of North America,” which her existence threatens (and vice versa). She is an anomaly, standing out even more because so many others in similarly administrated oppressive environments had their controlled deaths enacted successfully. 
    Necropolitics can be applied to today’s political climate as well. Trans and GNC people are dangerous because they threaten the confines of gender rules and have roots tied with radical anti-capitalist movements. Their existence inherently questions the norms which the governing body upholds. Unfortunately, this discomfort by systems regulating life & death is not limited to the legislative system, it also extends across to political movements. A lot of queer movements have shed trans activism for a sliver of mainstream tolerance for a conformed, manufactured idea of queerness (but without any legal permanence). This absence of cross-movement solidarity has only served in the undermining of real change, as seen through same-gender marriage & queer custody rights returning to the courts, back at risk of being repealed. 
So the Oscars..what was up with that?

oSTEM Bi-Weekly GMM Logo


oSTEM Bi-Weekly GMM

Friday, March 17, 2023
5:00pm - 6:00pm
Genesee 308, 500 Joseph C. Wilson Blvd, Rochester, NY 14627, United States
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Our bi weekly member meeting



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