International Day of Women and Girls in Science By Komal Dadlani & Cristina Del Puerto, @Lab4U
Today, we celebrate the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. Through this blog post, we want to share with you the achievements of 5 women in Science throughout history. We know that there are many other amazing female scientists, we can’t mention all of them in one blog post but we invite you to tell us who is your favorite one?
1. Marie Curie
Considered the Mother of Modern Physics. In 1898 Marie Curie, together with her husband Pierre, discovered the elements of polonium and radio. In 1903 she received the Nobel Prize in Physics for her discovery. In 1911, Marie Curie was awarded again the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. In this way, Marie Curie became the first person to win Nobel prizes in different specialties. A beautiful quote from Madame Curie: “In life there are no things to fear, there are only things to understand.”
Trivia: our friends from InvestChile just shared great news: Google will expand its global network with new submarine cables in Chile, Denmark and Hong Kong- Guess what’s the name of this global network: “Curie”, a private cable that connects Chile with Los Angeles. The Curie cable will be the first to land in Chile in almost 20 years. Google hopes that once deployed, Curie will be the largest single data pipeline in Chile, and will serve Google users and customers in Chile and in all Latin American countries.
2. Jane Goodall
Scientist and English activist. She studied chimpanzees for almost six decades. Goodall wrote innumerable publications and books about her studies of chimpanzees. Her observations covered several topics, such as, the relationship between chimpanzees, their feeding and the use of tools among others. Goodall received several honors and awards for her research and activism in favor of animals. In 2002, she was named Messenger of Peace for the United Nations. Our favorite quote: “Only if we understand, can we care. Only if we care, can we help. Only if we help, they will be saved. “
3. María Teresa Ruíz
Chilean astronomer. She was the first woman to successfully study astronomy at the University of Chile before she studied at Princeton University and gained her masters in astrophysics. In 1997, Professor Maria Teresa Ruiz discovered an unusual celestial body, previously theorized but never observed: the first free-floating brown dwarf. Brown dwarfs are thought of as being failed stars or expanded planets. In 2017, Prof. María Teresa Ruíz won the L’Oréal Unesco award for Women in Science for her outstanding contributions on the understanding of faint stars.
4. Françoise Barré-Sinoussi
French virologist. In 2008, together with Luc Montagnier, Françoise Barré-Sinoussi was awarded the Nobel Prize of Medicine for the discovery of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). She is an active member of different science organizations. She is also an activist in the fight against AIDS and has been collaborating for more than 30 years with multiple countries in Asia and Africa in the prevention, treatment and care of AIDS.
African-american mathematician. She was a pioneer in space science and computing. Katherine Johnson calculated the trajectory for Alan Shepard, the first American in space. She also rechecked the calculations of the mission that sent the first American to orbit the Earth. Her calculations were critical to the success of the Apollo Moon landing program and the start of the Space Shuttle program. In 2015, Johnson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
We believe that the next Marie Curie or Maria Teresa Ruiz can be anywhere in the world. Help us inspire the next generation of Women in Science! Check our previous blog with some worrisome data that we are committed to change.
At Lab4U we are constantly looking for strategies to motivate more girls in science early on in their education, as we believe that by inspiring them with examples will help them aspire to become an astronaut or physicist. For example, our experiments in Lab4Physics are designed to be inclusive by showcasing a girl on a skateboard for the Movement experiments or a girl lifting weights for the Force and Energy experiments, or even the first screen of the accelerometer with a girl holding a smartphone to measure acceleration.