was a microbiologist and academic from Ireland. She was the first female Deputy
President and Registrar of University College Dublin.
She studied at University College and Trinity
College Dublin, earning a PhD in Microbiology. She became the chairwoman of the
National Council for Curriculum and Assessment in 1996, making her one of the
most influential persons in Irish education.
Ruth Patrick (1907-2013) was a scientist
specializing in freshwater ecology. Her most important research focused on
developing ways to measure the health of freshwater ecosystems.
She obtained her PhD from the University of
Virginia, and while there conducted revealing research on the geology of the
state. She was a volunteer curator of microscopy for the Academy of Natural
Science for eight years before she was paid for this work. Her research was
rewarded with numerous prizes, such as the National Medal of Science or the
Benjamin Franklin Medal for Distinguished Achievement in the Sciences.
Joan W. Bennett
(b. 1942) is a fungal geneticist. She has been the President of the
American Society for Microbiology, as well as a professor at Tulane University
for 35 years.
She was the first tenure track woman in the Biology department of Tulane
University. She was a co-founder of the first women’s centre at Newcomb College,
and started teaching a course on the biology of women from 1975.
Christine Van Broeckhoven (b. 1953) is a molecular biologist from Belgium. Her research focuses on Alzheimer dementia and bipolar disorders.
She has had her own laboratory at the University of Antwerp since 1983, and conducted vital work for understanding the genetics of diseases such as Alzheimer. She was awarded multiple prizes, such as the Belgian Quinquennial Prize or the L’Oreal-UNESCO Award for Women in Science. In 2011 she won the European Inventor Award.
Hubbard (1924-2016) was the first woman to hold a tenured professorship in biology
at Harvard University. Her lifelong research brought important contributions to
the understanding of vision in vertebrates and invertebrates.
Born in Vienna, she moved to the US as a teenager fleeing from Nazism.
She obtained her PhD in biology from Radcliffe University in 1950. She was a
strong critic of the biological theory of women’s inequality, as demonstrated
by her book The Politics of Women’s Biology.
Shirley M. Tilghman (b. 1946) is a scholar and professor of molecular
biology. She was the 19th President of Princeton University, and the first
woman to hold this position.
She is a
specialist in molecular genetics, and made a number of breakthrough scientific
discoveries while working for the Institute for Cancer Research in
Philadelphia, and the University of Pennsylvania. She also served as the
President of the American Society for Cell Biology.
Sylvia Earle (b. 1935) is a marine
biologist, and a National Geographic explorer-in-residence. In 1998 she was
named as the first Hero of the Planet by
obtained her PhD in phycology in 1966, and in 1970 was chosen to lead the first
all-female team of aquanauts in the Tektite II Project. She founded Deep Ocean
Engineering, designing robotic subsea systems. She also served as the first
female chief scientist of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric
(b. 1953) is a plant
pathologist and virologist from Kenya. She is the founder and director of
Africa Harvest Biotech Foundation International, which aims to boost food
production in Africa through biotechnology.
obtained her PhD from the University of Bath in England. She also worked as a
senior research officer for the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute, and has
received numerous awards for her efforts to fight poverty and hunger on the
Sangeeta Bhatia (b. 1968) is an
Indian American biological engineering who currently teaches at the Massachusetts
Institute of Technology. Her research focuses on applications of micro- and
nano-technology for tissue repair and regeneration.
She obtained her
Masters and PhD from MIT, and an M.D. from Harvard Medical School. She also
directs the Laboratory for Multiscale Regenerative Technologies at MIT.