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PhD student joins all-female expedition to Antarctica

Posted on 13 October 2017

80 intrepid female scientists, including Politics PhD student Sandra Guzman Luna, undertake largest all-female expedition to Antarctica.

Sandra Guzman Luna profile image

The world's largest all-female expedition to Antarctica, reaching over 440 million people across the globe, is continuing to raise awareness for the low representation of women in leadership positions in STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine). Homeward Bound is set to tackle Antarctic seas again in February 2018.

With an even bigger expedition planned for 2018, Homeward Bound, led by Australian leadership activist Fabian Dattner, has gathered a new crew of 80 female scientists from across the globe (last year there were 76) to take part in the year-long programme to develop leadership, strategic and communication capabilities, culminating in a three week voyage to Antarctica.

Ms Dattner says, "Homeward Bound has had the support of influential figures in advocating for gender equality, including Amy Poehler, Chelsea Clinton and Sheryl Sandberg, and has had its message amplified by publications such as The New York Times, CNN, Quartz, BBC, ABC News and many more."

"Collaborative teams of women, over the next 12 months, will focus on developing the leadership capabilities to influence significant issues at a global level including climate change, deforestation, species extinction and quality of life. Teams will also tackle specific gender issues, such as sexual harassment and bullying, as they affect the progression of women in general, and specifically in STEMM," continues Ms Dattner.

Homeward Bound’s maiden voyage was peer reviewed by the first 76 participants and is set to be significantly bigger, more influential and more relevant as a result. This year's expedition will have a greater focus on the marriage of science communication and emotional intelligence to reach non science audiences. Emotional intelligence components will focus on giving and receiving feedback, handling tough conversations, dealing with self-talk and courage over confidence.

Greg Mortimer, OAM Australian expeditioner, has agreed again to participate in the upcoming voyage for Homeward Bound, departing on 18th February and returning on 11th March 2018.

"On board will be women from 13 countries, all engaged in critical science disciplines, bringing global awareness to the paucity of women in leadership positions and the costs this is having on our planet," concludes Ms Dattner.

Sandra Leticia Guzman Luna, is a PhD student in Politics at the University of York and she is Founder and General Coordinator at GFLAC (Grupo de Financiamiento Climático para América Latina y el Caribe).

Sandra is the first Mexican to be chosen for Homeward Bound. Sandra is a social scientist and climate activist with an interest in climate finance and energy transition. Sandra says: "This is an amazing opportunity to connect our daily fight to deal with climate change with the actual impacts of the phenomena to increase awareness about the urgency to take action. I expect to fall in love with Antarctica and, as a result, fight harder to protect it for present and future generations. Homeward Bound is a life-changing experience to develop an amazing support group of women scientists."

Notes to editors:

For more information about Sandra Guzmán:

Support her path to Antarctica:

Follow her:

Twitter: @san_lunag

FB: @Sandra L Guzman Luna 


About Homeward Bound: Homeward Bound is the world's first state of the art leadership and strategic program for women in STEMM, co-founded by Fabian Dattner, Australian leadership activist, and Dr Jess Melbourne-Thomas, Research Scientist at the Australian Antarctic Division, Dr Justine Shaw (Research Fellow, Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation University of Queensland, and Dr Mary-Anne Lea (Senior Research Fellow and Deputy Head of the Ecology and Biodiversity Centre, Institute for Marine & Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania). Homeward Bound aims to build a 1,000 strong global collaboration of women in science over the next 10 years, to network and skill these women set against the backdrop of Antarctica. The initiative, turned global movement, aims to heighten the influence and impact of women in leadership positions in order to influence policy and decision making as it shapes our planet.


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