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Girls Discover the IAEA on Daughters' Day

Daughters’ Day Introduces Young Girls to Careers in Nuclear Science


Myla (foreground) during a question and answer session on Vienna Daughters Day. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA)

Even though this is 12-year-old Myla’s third time attending the IAEA’s annual Daughters’ Day event, she says she keeps learning new and interesting things. For example, during a visit to the Satellite Imagery Laboratory, she found out that there are far more satellites orbiting the Earth than she would have thought. In fact there are 1265 functional orbiting satelites operated by more than two dozen countries.

Daughters' Day, or Wiener Toechtertag, is an annual citywide event that is sponsored by the City of Vienna in Austria, and occurs in late April. This year, 38 staff members’ daughters between 11 and 16 years old received tours and lectures about the IAEA’s work. They learned about cybersecurity, how radiation is used in medicine, the ways radiation is used to protect the environment from plastic pollution by facilitating the production of biodegradable plastics, radiation monitoring, printing and publishing of the IAEA’s hundreds of technical documents and books, assistance to Member States through the technical cooperation programme, and the way satellite imagery is used in nuclear safeguards activities worldwide.

Myla said she was very happy to learn about the many medical and scientific job opportunities that are open to her in the future. Myla’s mom Kaye Turner, who works in the IAEA’s Human Resources Division, said both of their participation in Daughters’ Day over the last three years has been well worth it. “I think it’s a great opportunity because the young girls can see what’s out there. They see that there’s no limit to what they can become. They can go to the highest level.”

At the beginning of the day, Head of the Department of Management and the IAEA's only female Deputy Director General, Janice Dunn Lee, emphasized the value of school and work as the most effective routes to independence and personal strength. “Only with education and a career can you be independent and self-reliant. You will be able to stand up for yourself and be proud of what you have accomplished. You will have skills, knowledge, a strong mind, and financial independence. Don’t ever give them up.”

Dunn Lee also encouraged the girls to be adventurous, value teamwork, and never be afraid of failure.  “Don’t be afraid to fail, to take risks and to ask questions. You might tumble on your way, but it would only make you stronger if you tell yourself you can make it.”

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