Where others in academia have abused the recent interest in platforming minorities in STEM and other areas, Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah has worked hard with organizations and individuals to promote diversity and ensure minorities of all backgrounds are represented in professor positions as well as class positions.
In early August, neuroscientist BethAnn McLaughlin was discovered to have created a fake Twitter account for a non-existent bisexual Native American professor via the handle @Sciencing_Bi. McLaughlin, who is white, used the fake account to boost the credibility of her own account after she had come under fire for bullying women of color who had signed up to help McLaughlin’s MeTooSTEM organization, founded to assist sexual abuse survivors in the STEM field. McLaughlin was discovered of her deceit after ‘killing’ @Sciencing_Bi by alleging she had contracted COVID-19 after being forced to continue working with students at her university.
While there was a lot to unpack in this story, quite arguably the most frustrating aspect was that a white woman tried to use the story of others to conceal her own failures to minorities in the STEM field. Currently, one-third of minority students leave their STEM majors citing reasons that include either true exclusion or discrimination or simply the feeling of there being exclusion and discrimination. Thus, the use of a fake account to amplify nonexistent exclusion and discrimination towards minorities only hurts the cause.
The Real Actions of Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah
Contrast this type of action to that of the real world and real success action of minority professors and research powerhouses like Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah. Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah has served for many years as a member of the College of CSR Reviewers to assist and support reviews of minority biomedical research. Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah has also served as a member and chair for the minority program at the Association of Research in Otolaryngology and as a member of that same organization’s publication committee. Where McLaughlin amplified a false voice that benefited only herself, Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah has amplified real minority voices in the STEM field, including people of color, women, and those disabled, to ensure that faculty members and both current and postdoc students get the funding and support they need to reach their goals.
As an underrepresented minority in the United States and the field of science, Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah is no stranger to the real barriers that exist. Or the continued discrimination and hate crimes people of color and marginal communities face. In 2014, vandals scrawled hateful racial slurs across the windows of the UC Neurosciences Building and directed toward Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah and his colleague. Two years before that, a noose and a swastika were found in the same community.
The difference, however, is that Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah has done the actual work necessary to amplify real voices. Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah serves as a leader for positive change in the STEM field in regards to promoting diversity and greater inclusion. When you want real action, you want people like Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah. Dr. Ebenezer Yamoah remains active in his research enterprise at the University of Nevada, Reno, where he is the principal investigator of multiple, highly competitive NIH funded grants and he also directs a program project grant from the National Institute on Aging.