5 Female Engineers Who Are Smashing it in Their Field


Aprille Ericsson

Ericsson is the program manager at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. She has a long and impressive career in the field of aerospace engineering. One of her greatest achievements is being the first Black woman to earn a Ph.D. in engineering at the Goddard Space Flight Center.

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  1. I had a good long talk with some young smart black girls the other day at the Juneteenth fest out here and I told them that there is a conspiracy against them to stop being good in math and science as they progress in school. I asked them who among them was at the top of their class in math and they all raised their hands. I told them that once they get to high school and college that they would be dissuaded from being engineers and scientists and that they should insist on it and never let anyone talk them out of it. One of the girls said, "Well I don't understand why there isn't more black women in those jobs because all of the girls are smarter than the boys in my class." I said its because they don't want you to make money or have power and to influence the society as women.

    They all knew about Mae Jemison being the first black woman in space and when I told them that I met her and spoke to her, all of their eyes lit up and they were really excited. I told them that I said to her that growing up I just never thought I would see a black woman astronaut and she said to me "Why not?" and they loved it. They left feeling very validated and empowered. We need to really insist on giving black girls this boost of confidence and all of the tools and info they need. It's vital.