Celebrating female leadership in engineering

Woman engineer

Written by Neve Spicer , Founder & Director WeTheParents.org

The science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields are pioneers of innovation, a fact made possible by the brilliant minds driving research, discovery, and invention therein. Many crucial advancements in STEM have been made by intrepid female engineers and scientists, which is a wonderful thing to celebrate this February 25th on Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day.

The awareness day is part of Engineers Week, a seven-day event led by the National Society of Professional Engineers. Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day, or “Girl Day”, is a worldwide campaign aimed at introducing young women to the STEM fields. This is done by engineers, educators, and volunteers who facilitate fun engineering activities for girls to participate them in. This can encourage their developing interest in STEM and help them to become more confident problem-solvers.

The world as we know it today wouldn’t be the same without female engineers, including:

  • Ada Lovelace, who is remembered as one of the first computer programmers as well as the creator of the first algorithm, a program intended to be carried out by a machine
  • Hedy Lamarr, an Austrian actress equally renowned for her contributions to the development of frequency-hopping spread spectrum technology which was used to stymie the firing of Nazi torpedoes during World War 2
  • Nora Stanton Barney, who paved the way for future females in engineering as the first female engineering graduate of Cornell University as well as the first female member of the American Society of Civil Engineers
  • Dr. Patricia Bath, an early pioneer of vision-saving laser cataract surgery as well as the first female African-American staff surgeon at the UCLA Medical Center
  • Alice Parker, an African American female inventor who filed a patent for a gas-powered form of central heating that informed the way today’s central heating systems function; her filing pre-dated both the Civil Rights and Women’s Liberation movements

The list of female scientists, engineers, and innovators is long. To meet more women who’ve changed our world, take a look at this infographic from We The Parents.

Originally posted here

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