So-yeon (b. 1978) is a Korean astronaut and
biotechnologist. She is the first person from her country to fly in space.
She obtained her doctorate in biotech
systems in 2008, and went on to become an Engineering Physics Professor at
Everett Community College. Her pioneering space mission took place in the same
year; she conducted eighteen different science experiments on her flight. She
also worked for the Korean Aerospace Research Institute.
Aprille Ericsson-Jackson (b. 1963) is an aerospace engineer working for
the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. She was the first African-American woman
to obtain a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Howard University, as well as a
PhD in Engineering from NASA GSFC.
She was an undergraduate in aeronautical engineering
at MIT, where she worked in the Applied Physics Laboratory. Her work at NASA helps
to manage spacecraft orientation during missions.
Bonnie Dunbar (b. 1949) is a retired
NASA astronaut and a current professor of aerospace engineering at Texas A&M University. She is also the
Director of the Institute for Engineering Education and Innovation.
She became an astronaut in 1981 and logged
more than 1200 hours in space. She later served as the president and CEO of the
Museum of Flight, and was the head of the STEM Center at the University of Houston.
(1924-2014) was a
pioneer in the fields of biomedical engineering and expert systems. She was one
of the first scientists to apply computer technology to medical research.
She studied electrical
engineering and obtained her PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in
1951. She then worked for the Neurological Institute of New York, and later for
the Brain Research Institute at UCLA, where she organised a Data Processing
Laboratory. She was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship and the IEEE Centennial
Medal, among other honours.
Joanna Kennedy (b. 1950) is a civil
engineer from England. She helped found the Women into Science and Engineering
organisation in 1984.
She was one of three women to graduate with
first class honours in her engineering class at the University of Oxford. She
was the project manager for several important developments, such as the
National Maritime Museum Cornwall or the remodelling of King’s Cross St.
Pancras. She has won several awards and was made an Officer of the Order of the
British Empire in 1995.
Susan Helms (b. 1958) is a former NASA astronaut and
lieutenant general in the US Air Force. She was a crew member on five Space
Shuttle Missions and spent five months on the ISS.
After graduating from the Air Force Academy, she
worked as an engineer for the Armament Laboratory. She holds the record for the
longest spacewalk, with 8 hours and 56 minutes.
Epps (b. 1970) is a NASA astronaut and aerospace engineer. She served as an
aquanaut on the Aquarius underwater laboratory in 2014.
She obtained her PhD in aerospace engineering from the University of
Maryland, and qualified as an astronaut in 2011. Next year, she is set to spend
up to six months on the International Space Station, on which occasion she will
become the first African American crew member.
was one of the first women to hold an engineering degree in the United States.
She was also a dedicated activist for women’s suffrage, as her grandmother,
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, had been.
graduated from Cornell University with a degree in civil engineering in 1905,
after which she was accepted in the American Society of Civil Engineers as its
first female member – but only as a junior member, with no possibility to
advance, on account of her gender. She was awarded Fellow status posthumously in
Ursula Burns (b. 1958) is currently the Chairwoman of Xerox,
and served as its CEO from 2009 to 2016. She was the first African-American
woman CEO of a Fortune 500 company.
The daughter of
immigrants from Panama, she obtained a degree in Mechanical Engineering from
Columbia University. She began working for Xerox as an intern in 1980, and rose
through the ranks until she became the company’s CEO. She is also a founding
board director of Change the Equation, concerned with improving the American
education system in STEM fields.