NextGen: Ladies Lunch, Competitions, and Scholarships

ASTM Hosts First “Ladies Lunch” in Two Years

After holding virtual sessions during the COVID-19 pandemic, the December meeting of the committee on petroleum products, liquid fuels, and lubricants (D02) in Anaheim, California, saw the first in-person “Ladies Lunch” since 2019.  

The lunch itself has an interesting history.

During her first few meetings at ASTM International, Yong-Li McFarland, Southwest Research Institute, realized that women represented a much smaller ratio of attendees and that outside of the meeting rooms, there wasn’t much opportunity to create connections with her fellow female industry colleagues. In June of 2013, McFarland decided to create a group lunch with all the interesting, knowledgeable, and friendly women she had met with the intent of developing a place for finding “ASTM friends.”  

At its core, the goal of the group is to take a break from all the “business” at the meetings and enjoy a meal while professionally and personally catching up with the women in attendance. These biannual lunches also provide business opportunities, where members can develop strong relationships with clients, suppliers, and competitors; an avenue to share stresses, ideas, and happy news; a place to learn standards development and maneuvering the ASTM process; and gather with other women engaged as standards developers. Regular discussion topics at lunch vary widely, including maternity leave, new test methods, where to get samples for an interlaboratory study, working from home, and award recipients. While each meeting location is different and the group of women attending fluctuates, all the group members know to find the Ladies’ Lunch group on the Monday of each meeting at the hotel restaurant.  

This Ladies’ Lunch is not special or unique in its format, but it is special for those who are part of the group. As the number of women attending the D02 meetings continues to grow, so does the informal membership to the Ladies’ Lunch group. Currently, the group has over 50 members and welcomes friendly, helpful, and strong women. Anyone who is interested in joining the D02 Ladies’ Lunch, please email Yong-Li at

Submitted by Yong-Li McFarland

ANSI Announces 2022 Student Paper Competition

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is now accepting papers for its 2022 Student Paper Competition. Students are invited to submit papers on ways that standards support innovation, cooperation, and excellence at the Olympic Games.

ANSI notes, “Standards play a key role in the collaborative work that enables Olympic dreams to become a reality for the thousands of competitors and staff involved, and in creating a vicarious thrill for the billions watching around the globe.” The competition encourages entrants to explore the use of — or identify an absence of/need for — standards that support health, safety, performance, efficiency, and/or innovation at the Olympic Games.

Entries must be submitted to Lisa Rajchel ( by June 1. Winning papers will be announced in the third quarter of this year.

City College of New York Hosts Hybrid Course on Site Assessment Standards

The City College of New York welcomed ASTM International on campus for a first-of-its-kind hybrid course in the New York City area focusing on “E1527-21 – Standard Practice for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process.” The course focused on the significant modifications included in the 2021 revision of the standard. 

The course, which took place January 26– 27, covered the ASTM Environmental Site Assessment Standard Practices for the Phase I Site Assessment (E1527) and the Phase II Environmental Site Assessment (E1903). It is scheduled to run again on June 22–23 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the same location.

SES Offers Scholarship

The Society for Standards Professionals (SES) is again offering a $1,000 scholarship to students who study standards in their academic curriculum, as it has since 2017. The scholarship supports students who will help SES achieve its mission of increasing the awareness and use of standards. 

Full-time undergraduate or graduate students who use standards in their academic curriculum at a college or university are eligible to apply. Selection criteria include academic achievement; leadership qualities; concern for others/volunteerism; demonstrated academic use of standards; demonstrated importance of standards in career goals.

Applications are due April 24. Read more here.

Graduate Scholarship Applications Due

The ASTM International Graduate Scholarships aim to enhance students’ knowledge, understanding, and application of ASTM International and its standards. A $10,000 scholarship is presented each year to as many as four high-potential graduate students who have demonstrated high levels of interest or involvement with ASTM standards. Applications are due April 30. Contact: Travis Murdock, ASTM (+1.610.832.9826;

Mather Scholarship Applications Due April 30 

The Katharine and Bryant Mather Scholarship is presented each year, contingent upon available funds, to full-time undergraduate students completing their second/sophomore year of college or later, or graduate students who are pursuing degrees specializing in cement or concrete materials technology or concrete construction. Each scholarship recipient receives up to $7,500 to be used for educational expenses and up to $1,500 to cover expenses to attend a C09 committee meeting. This award is administered by the committee on concrete and concrete aggregates (C09). The deadline for applications is April 30. For more information, visit the Students and Professors section of the ASTM International website or contact Scott Orthey

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