An 8-year-old girl who likes bugs showed her bullies what’s up — by getting published in a scientific journal

We’re a day late for Woman Crush Wednesday, but we’re gonna pretend anyway. 8-year-old Sophia Spencer is officially the co-writer of an article in a major scientific journal. Sophia has a passion for bugs. Unfortunately, her peers teased her about her love for critters.

Eager to encourage her daughter’s passion, rather than stifle it, Sophia’s mom reached out to the Entomological Society of Canada.

She wrote:

"I was wondering if a professional entomologist would speak to her over the phone to encourage her love and explain to her how she could make this into a career. I am constantly looking for articles and information on the species and how to recognize them, but find the lack of answers to her questions unhelpful."

And the Entomological Society answered! They hooked Sophia up with an entomology PhD candidate, Morgan Jackson. He was writing a paper about Twitter as a powerful tool for the promotion of women in science. Together with Morgan, Sophia was credited as a junior author on an article entitled “Engaging for a Good Cause: Sophia’s Story and Why #BugsR4Girls.” We’re not sure if we’ve ever loved anything more!?

Sophia was super inspired by the experience, and being validated in her passion by professionals made her realize that it’s okay to love what she loves, no matter what other people say. She told NPR:

"Before...I really thought loving bugs wasn't the best hobby. But after I realized bugs are for girls I thought to myself, 'Well, I think I should start loving bugs again, because just because people say they're weird and gross doesn't mean I shouldn't like them."

With this amazing support system Sophia’s found, we can’t wait to see what she does in the future!