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Category: women in science
  • The rover will launch next year to search for evidence of past or present life on Mars.

    In 2020, a new rover will fly to Mars to search for signs of past or present life — so it's fitting that the rover will be named after Rosalind Franklin, the British chemist who helped uncover the mysteries of DNA! Astronaut Tim Peake announced the name at the Airbus factory in the UK where the European Space Agency (ESA) rover is being assembled. Franklin's sister, Jenifer Glynn, spoke to the BBC about the honor: "In the last year of Rosalind's life, I remember visiting her in hospital on the day when she was excited by the news of the [Soviet Sputnik satellite] — the very beginning of space exploration. She could never have imagined that over 60 years later there would be a rover sent to Mars bearing her name, but somehow that makes this project even more special." Continue reading Continue reading

  • Eight downloadable posters celebrating women of STEM perfect for displaying in kids' rooms and classrooms!

    The saying, "If she can't see it, she can't be it," speaks to the importance of introducing girls to female role models, especially in areas where women's accomplishments were often overlooked or minimized such as in science, mathematics, and technology. A new poster collection aims to bring more of these women's stories to light — and inspire today's Mighty Girls with the knowledge that she can be whatever she aspires to be! Continue reading Continue reading

  • Dr. Sherri Mason's groundbreaking research discovered the widespread prevalence of microplastics in the environment.

    Dr. Sherri Mason, whose research alerted the world to the widespread prevalence of microplastics, has been awarded a 2018 Heinz Award for Public Policy for her groundbreaking work to address this growing health and environment problem. Mason was the first scientist to research and identify microplastics pollution in the Great Lakes, the largest freshwater system in the world. Her research brought international attention to the threats posed by microplastics, leading to state and federal bans on microbeads, tiny bits of plastic used in exfoliating scrubs and washes that Mason discovered were accumulating in the environment and the food chain. "Sherri’s research has made the issue of plastic pollution real and present for everyone," said Teresa Heinz, Chairman of the Heinz Family Foundation. "Her ongoing work can be an important key to ending the steady accumulation of plastics in our environment." Continue reading Continue reading

  • Stephanie Kwolek's invention of Kevlar has saved countless lives over the past 40 years.

    Stephanie Kwolek's invention of Kevlar has saved countless lives over the past 40 years. Kevlar is a fiber five times stronger than steel that is now used in numerous products ranging from boots for firefighters to spacecraft — and most famously, in bulletproof vests. It's estimated that since Kevlar's introduction to body armor in the 1970s, the lives of over 3,000 police officers have been saved, as well as those of innumerable soldiers and others in conflict zones. On the day that the pioneering chemist passed away in June 2014 at the age of 90, DuPont announced that the one-millionth protective vest made using Kwolek's lifesaving invention was sold. Continue reading Continue reading

  • A Mighty Girl's top picks of books for children and teens about real-life female scientists who changed the world!

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    "Young girls need to see role models in whatever career they may choose, just so they can picture themselves doing those jobs someday. You can't be what you can't see." — Sally Ride, First American Woman in Space

    When someone mentions scientists, chances are good that the face that pops into mind is male: perhaps a picture of Albert Einstein or Neil DeGrasse Tyson, or maybe a more generic man in a lab coat. However, even when women were largely shut out of science, there were still groundbreaking women making discoveries, conducting experiments, and publishing research! And while school curricula and popular culture are slowly expanding to include women beyond a few notable favorites such as Marie Curie and Jane Goodall, many people — young and old alike — still often find themselves struggling to name even a handful of female scientists.

    Fortunately, with the increasing availability of great biographies for children and teens, we can show our girls that women in science make contributions every day! And, of course, these titles are just as important to share with boys because all kids need to know that science is for girls! With that in mind, we've showcased our favorite biographies of female scientists for children and teens. From primatology to physics, the expanses of space to the vast floor of the ocean, these women made their mark and changed the way we see the world... just like the budding Mighty Girl scientists of today will one day! Continue reading Continue reading

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