Women in Chemistry: Career Pathways

Much has been done in the years since the enactment of Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 to ensure that sex is not a factor in one’s employment.  However, there is still an ongoing discrepancy in the number of women entering, and remaining in, the fields of chemistry and its allied sciences.

The Career Pathways Conferences are a network of women in the Greater Philadelphia area who come together on a regular basis to talk about being a woman in chemistry, learn from others already in the field, and discuss the experiences that our oral history interviewees. These Career Pathways conferences are a venue in which we develop an outreach program that contributes to the dialog about ways in which to ensure that women not only enter chemistry as a chosen discipline, but also that they remain in that field for their profession.  

These oral history interviews  complement the Women in Science oral history program. The purpose of the Career Pathways for Women in Chemistry Oral History Project is to:

  • Collect and make available oral histories of women in the chemical sciences who entered the workforce in the first and second generations after Title IX
  • Better understand the ways in which women who entered the chemical sciences workforce in the 1st and 2nd generation after Title IX achieved success;
  • Gain insight into the careers of women who have chosen, and then persevered in, chemistry as a profession; and
  • Provide a forum in which undergraduate and graduate students can learn from others experiences and discover potential avenues to overcoming limitations facing women in chemistry in order to ensure success in their own careers.

View video clips from these oral histories >

For more information about Career Pathways oral histories and events please contact Hilary Domush at hdomush@chemheritage.org.

Individuals interviewed for this collection so far are:

Michelle V. Buchanan

Catherine T. Hunt

Amy H. Newman

Cynthia Burrows

Nancy B. Jackson

Geraldine L. Richmond

Susan B. Butts

Madeleine Jacobs

Marion C. Thurnauer

Sally Chapman

Catherine H. Middlecamp

Carol A. Williams

Judith C. Giordan

Donna J. Nelson



Hear It Firsthand

The Center for Oral History captures and preserves the stories of notable figures in chemistry and related fields, with over 425 oral histories that deal with various aspects of science, of scientists, and of scientific practices. For more information please visit CHF’s Oral History Program or e-mail oralhistory@

Catalyst Series: Women in Chemistry

Women in Chemistry

Follow the adventures of eight leading women in chemistry and celebrate their life-changing, chance-taking, thrill-seeking love of science. 

Sensing Change

See your environment with fresh eyes through this online exhibit.