All-American Girl: Minority at Work

883677_10200878701312992_223342532_oStefanie Bernosky,
Houston, TX.

I was raised as an All-American girl to an All-American family in an All-American town. I even looked “All-American”, proudly featuring my braces and American Flag sweater in this dated family photo (circa 1994). We can trace my family (both sides) to the United States prior to the United States Revolution. However, in my workplace, I am very much the minority. I feel a lack of identity as a home-grown geologist in the Oil and Gas Industry. Our country is woefully lacking behind the rest of the World in graduating highly technical staff to fill in demand jobs as our internal demand for Energy continues to increase. On my team, I am surrounded by immigrants. Not the face of immigration spoken of most often in the news, but immigration driven by the lack of emphasis of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) education in the United States. Of the 8 geologists on my team, I am one of only 2 that are native born US Citizens. Our team come from a variety of backgrounds, Canadian, Indian, Indonesian, British, Chinese, and Belgian. This is the norm, not the exception in my industry. As others speak fondly of their homelands, I feel like a minority, having no connection to a “Motherland”. I understand this speaks more of cultural differences rather than racial differences, but it speaks loudly of the increasing racial and cultural diversification occurring in our country and its impact on how we have previously defined as “All-American”.


Tweets by Michele Norris