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The International Day of Women and Girls in Science, observed annually on February 11th, signifies a commitment to promoting equal opportunities for women and girls in scientific disciplines.

Tina Taylor of COgro LABS at VTCRC

We’d first like to recognize one of our own: COgro LABS Lab Manager, Tina Taylor. As a graduate of The University of Arkansas, she embarked on her scientific career at UT Southwestern in Dallas, TX, where she served as a Biomedical Researcher in Pulmonary Pediatrics. In 2012, a new chapter unfolded as she accepted a position at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, MD, focusing on Non-human Primate Drug Research. The journey led her to Virginia in 2016 when Virginia Tech inaugurated the School of Neuroscience. She became one of the pioneering Biomedical Researchers in the newly established school.

lab manager opening door

Engaging in groundbreaking research, she made significant contributions by uncovering a sex difference in the gene associated with language and brain development, specifically Fox P2. Her dedication to Neuroscience spanned five years until an unexpected turn of events in 2020 led her to join the Department of Population Health Science Center for Emerging Zoonotic and Arthropod Pathogens. Tasked with investigating SARS-CoV-2 in biosafety level 3 conditions, her work received funding from NIH and CDC, resulting in several authored research papers and numerous manuscripts.

In 2023, an exciting opportunity arose as she was invited to join our team at VTCRC. Taking on the role of setting up, managing, and inaugurating the new COgro LABS facility, she continues to contribute significantly to the scientific community.

Allison Christy of 2C Innovation Commons

VTCRC and COgro LABS take pride in showcasing the inspiring journey of Allison Christy, a polymer Scientist affiliated with 2C Innovation Commons. Allison’s venture into STEM began with a pursuit of a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry. During her undergraduate studies, she interned at NASA Glenn Research Center, delving into the application of polymers for nanoscale photolithography. This experience played a pivotal role in her decision to pursue a Ph.D. in Materials Science Engineering at Boise State University, specializing in polymer science.

Allison Christy

Throughout her doctoral journey, Allison worked on diverse projects ranging from sustainable plastics to smart adhesives and recycled materials. Her dissertation focused on creating recyclable plastics using super glue as a starting material, leading to the discovery of novel chemical reactions and an unexplored class of materials. This experience showcased the creative aspects of scientific research and underscored the rewards of combining ingenuity, knowledge, and hard work.

Having successfully defended her doctorate, Allison now serves as a Materials Engineer at 2C Innovation Commons, engaging in a variety of polymer-centric projects. Additionally, she contributes as a remote adjunct professor for Boise State University.

The narrative of Allison’s journey underscores the importance of fostering inclusivity and providing supportive environments to encourage more women to pursue careers in science. Initiatives like the International Day of Women and Girls in Science play a vital role in advancing global development goals while promoting diversity within the scientific community.

Join us in celebrating these incredible women and all other women who contribute to science. Thank you for all you do!