Sometimes I think about how being a first-generation science student puts me at such a disadvantage compared to some of my peers. It seems like every highly successful STEM student that I know had a mother that was a nurse or a father that was an engineer. A brother that’s a mathematician. A sister in medical school. Something to that effect.
Then there’s me. My dad’s an accountant. My mom only has a high school degree. Technically, my grandfather actually was a mechanical engineer, but he died too early on in my life and lived too far away for it to be terribly relevant. So I might as well not have any family in STEM at all. No one to grow up talking to about STEM. Or even about academia in general.
I have always been on this journey by myself. And it makes me want to cry sometimes.