Friday, May 4, 2018
URSP Student Monserrat Perez Hernandez Researches How to Reduce Gender-Based Harassment in Male-Dominated Fields
When I first started this project, a lot of my time was spent in literature review, as information regarding this topic has been difficult to find. This gave me the opportunity to learn about studies done in this subject and gave me a better understanding of what anti-harassment initiatives are lacking. Monitoring news daily has also been an extremely important part of my research, as there have been many unexpected changes and announcements within the past few months. My mentor and I have been working on a possible instrument to prevent and end gender-based harassment and have attempted to get in contact with Fairfax County leadership.
Thanks to this project, I have learnt that I have a passion for research and I have grown to appreciate the incredible opportunity OSCAR offers by funding out projects. I believe this research will benefit me in the long term as I continue to pursue research on my own, and it further encouraged me to pursue a Master’s Degree in Public Health in the future. I hope that with this research, someday I can make a difference in empowering women who experience gender-based harassment in male-dominated fields.
This project has taught me that leadership within organizations can change unexpectedly. The Chief of Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department announced his retirement midway through our project, which caused the direction of this research to change. Additionally, there were other leadership changes that may have impacted communication with Fairfax County. I also discovered how many resources are missing for those facing gender-based harassment and the importance of the role of bystanders in the prevention of gender-based harassment.