FoCo Speaks Ciencia! to give Latina scientists a platform for personal stories

Julia Trowbridge

poster with information
FoCo Speaks Ciencia, a night of culture infusion, art and science is happening Friday, April 27 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (Courtesy of 500 Women Scientists)

Latina women are underrepresented in the science community.

Because of this, 500 Women Scientists, Graduate Women in Science and the Poudre River Public Library District have teamed together to give six Latina women a platform to share their stories on Friday, April 27 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Horse & Dragon Brewing Company.


Really, they have a really diverse story set,” said Megan Machmuller, one of the co-founders for the Northern Colorado 500 Women Scientists Pod and a postdoctoral natural resources scientist. “It’s not necessarily about their science in particular, but their personal journeys.”

The event will also feature live painting by local artist Armando Silva, a Greeley-based artist who was born in Mexico, who will create a visual representation of the women’s stories. By the end of the event, the organizations are looking to sell the painting to donate the money.

All donations made at the event will benefit CienciaPR, a women-led non-profit organization that is working to transform science education in Puerto Rico.

The 500 Women Scientists organization has “pods” or chapters all around the world, which host events they call “salons,” which are meant to facilitate conversation and hopefully lead to donations for CienciaPR. The Northern Colorado pod, founded by Machmuller, Elizabeth McCullagh and Jessica Metcalf, felt that this salon should have a positive impact on the local community and Puerto Rico, which led to the idea of featuring local Latina scientists.

FoCo Speaks Ciencia: Friday, April 27 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Horse & Dragon Brewery

Graduate Women in Science, according to their website, is committed to providing networking events, panels, and trainings for our members as well as engaging in advocacy efforts. Because of the similar goals of the two science groups 500 Women Scientists and Graduate Women in Science, as well as the support from the Poudre River Public Library District, the three organizations teamed together to create this salon that focuses locally and internationally. 

“What this event is really all about is initiating conversation, beyond just our science bubble and academic world, and exposing that to the rest of the community and also using communication tools like art and storytelling to be more effective,” Machmuller said. “I think that we’re really looking to strengthen our community and at least create awareness and also to initiate good fruitful discussion.”

Collegian reporter Julia Trowbridge can be reached at or on twitter @chapin_jules.