I am gay and I am an assistant professor in geology in Singapore.//
My research uses geology to study earthquakes and sea level. Earthquakes result from slip on tectonic faults, and the deformation can raise or lower coastlines. I use sedimentary layers to identify past fault motion, and I use corals to reconstruct past sea-level and land-level change. From this, I answer questions from when and where prehistoric earthquakes have occurred, and how large they have been, to how sea level has varied in the past.
Science benefits from integrating a diverse set of experiences, backgrounds, identities, and perspectives; this happens when we can all be ourselves and bring our whole selves to science. LGBTQ+ people in STEM need visibility to find one another and supportive allies, because navigating the challenges of an academic career is difficult enough without having to worry about coming out. LGBTQ+ people in STEM need role models to know that their identities do not limit their possibilities. I first came out during my undergrad, and since then I have worked to raise queer visibility in my academic environment. Now faculty in Singapore, where laws do not yet protect members of our community, my quiet but steady push for increased visibility is more important than ever.