Antarctic expedition for University of Stirling polar scientist

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Ximena Aguilar Vega
Polar scientist Ximena Aguilar Vega, of the Faculty of Natural Sciences at the University of Stirling

A polar scientist from the University of Stirling is joining an expedition to Antarctica with 94 other women leaders in STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine).

Ximena Aguilar Vega’s research focuses on the dynamics between glaciers and the ocean, and the role these systems play in the carbon cycle in polar regions.

She is part of the Homeward Bound global initiative, which was set up to elevate the visibility of women with a STEMM background. It is widely acknowledged that women in STEMM fields are underrepresented in leadership globally.

Homeward Bound aims to equip a 10,000-strong collaboration of women with the skills to demonstrate a new model of leadership, to create better outcomes for our planet.

The 12-month programme includes online learning to increase leadership capacity, strategic capability, visibility, and collaboration, and culminates in a global meeting in Puerto Madryn, Argentina before a voyage to one of the most ecologically sensitive and inspiring areas on Earth, Antarctica.

Global effort

Ximena Aguilar Vega, a researcher in the Faculty of Natural Sciences, will depart Puerto Madryn on November 12 for a 19-night voyage on board The Island Sky. She was chosen by Homeward Bound selectors for her expertise in polar sciences and her potential to lead and enact change.

She said: “It is a privilege to be selected to take part in this expedition and I intend to use this opportunity to further my research help the global effort to save as much ice as possible on our planet.”

Outstanding leadership

Homeward Bound was founded by Australian leadership expert Fabian Dattner, who believed the world needed an initiative to unlock the leadership potential of outstanding women in STEMM, to upskill and support them to lead, influence and contribute to decision-making about the future of our planet.

Fabian Dattner said: “The aim of Homeward Bound has always been to identify and foster outstanding leadership potential in STEMM and Ximena is exactly the kind of person I had in mind when I dreamt of this programme.”

Participants in the programme are from 90 countries and a diverse representation of STEMM fields.

Homeward Bound’s vision is to create a global collaborative network of 10,000 women leaders with STEMM backgrounds by 2036, working for a sustainable future for our planet.

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