Achievement House Blog

International Womens Day

Female Contributions to the STEM & IT fields

Alane Butler

Celebrate Women’s History Month by learning about several women who have had significant impacts on the landscape of the educational and STEM fields.  How did they get there? How can you?

The 2016 breakout movie Hidden Figures celebrated the journey of three African American women who played a critical role in the early development of NASA’s space program. Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, and Dorothy Vaughan broke multiple barriers during a time of segregated workplaces. Their undeniable math and engineering skills forced NASA to recognize the contributions of African American women in the workplace.

 

Reshma Saujani is the Founder and CEO of Girls Who Code. GWC was founded with the intent to close the gender gap in the STEM field. Now, over 10,000 girls annually participate in after school clubs, summer immersion program sponsored by GWC. The programs partner with large companies to teach girls the Core4 computer science concepts that form the basis for all computer programming languages. Before founding Girls who Code in 2012, Reshma worked as a lawyer and ran for public office.

Since her appointment as CEO of Yahoo! in 2012 Marissa Mayer has struggled to get the company back on track. But how did she get to Yahoo!? Marissa was the first female engineer at Google, starting with the company in 1999. Over the years she became a key person in the development of some of the Google brands we use every day including Google Earth, Maps, Local Search, Street View and even Gmail! Before moving to Yahoo! she was one of the youngest members of Google’s executive team.

Martha Lane Fox is the founder of doteveryone; a UK based company that aims optimize how technology is used to better the world. They also research how to slow the growth of the digital divide between those that have access to technology and those that do not. Martha also is the youngest member of the UK’s House of Lords which is the upper branch of parliament on the other side of the Atlantic. She may have gotten her start during the early 2000’s dot-com boom; but today she serves as a Board of Trustees for Twitter, MakieLab and the Raspberry Pi Foundation!

Women in STEM fields often face unique challenges of discrimination and sometimes even harassment. At AHCCS we encourage our students to break the glass ceiling and push themselves as far as their imagination will let them! What women inspire you to achieve great things? Let us know!