Hidden figures in science to keep us motivated in second semester! Watch

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Hey all,

I've noticed a lot of people (including myself!) hit with senioritis lately, or just in general feeling a little demotivated as we move towards exam season and the end of the academic semester. So I thought that for British Science Week, when runs from today to March 12, and for International Women's Day, we could celebrate some little-known hidden figures in science to keep us motivated.

For example, did you know about the FLATS? These were the First Lady Astronaut Trainees, elite female pilots who underwent astronaut training in the early 1960s that would have become the first astronauts. Although they were incredibly skilled as pilots, and in some ways considered the best possible candidates compared to males (they required less food, water, and oxygen--all the expensive stuff in a space mission--and outperformed men on isolation tests and cardiovascular health), they were never put into space and lost funding. Find more details here: (x)

Jerri Cobb is one of the most well known FLATs. She was a record-setting aviator, went on to fly through the Amazon as a missionary pilot, and was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 1981.

Are there any other people you know of that inspire and motivate you that maybe have been a little hidden from the mainstream?
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Davalla
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(Original post by Michelle Bieger)
Are there any other people you know of that inspire and motivate you that maybe have been a little hidden from the mainstream?
Mary Anning?
Collected many fossils and even risked her life by it during the 1800s.

Perhaps not very 'hidden' now, but keeping in tune with International Lady Day and stuff, she struggled to be recognised at the time due to her sex.

I only really mention her because she died on this day (9th March, 1847).
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(Original post by Davalla)
Mary Anning?
Collected many fossils and even risked her life by it during the 1800s.

Perhaps not very 'hidden' now, but keeping in tune with International Lady Day and stuff, she struggled to be recognised at the time due to her sex.

I only really mention her because she died on this day (9th March, 1847).
Oh that's awesome, I didn't know of her! I love finding new scientists, haha.

I think another cool relatively unknown scientist was Caroline Herschel. Whilst her brother is the one who's named after the telescope and known in astronomy, she was right there next to him for every step of the way and his discoveries (finding Uranus) all happened with her assistance. She found a comet, the sister galaxy to Andromeda, and worked on nebulae catalogs.

She penned her own tombstone engraving, which read: "The eyes of her who is glorified here below turned to the starry heavens." Very apt, and I think quite beautiful language.
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PilboBaggins
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Mae C. Jemison! The first African-American female astronaut. In 1992 she became the first black woman in space, as a crew member on Endeavour Before this, she was also a doctor who served with the peace corps in Liberia and Sierra Leone/Liberia. What an amazing woman! :awesome:
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lilGem
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Henrietta Lacks better known as HeLa. She had cervical cancer and had her cells unknowingly taken from her following a biopsy and surgery- medical consent wasn't exactly a thing at the time. However, because of those cells which are now used all over the world for research in cancer, vaccines anything you could think of really it has led to the development of so many treatments.
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(Original post by lilGem)
Henrietta Lacks better known as HeLa. She had cervical cancer and had her cells unknowingly taken from her following a biopsy and surgery- medical consent wasn't exactly a thing at the time. However, because of those cells which are now used all over the world for research in cancer, vaccines anything you could think of really it has led to the development of so many treatments.
The story of Henrietta Lacks is so sad--that it wasn't told to the family until generations later is just appalling. In general during that time period women did not get any medical autonomy--have you heard of twilight birth or sleep?

PilboBaggins--she sounds incredible! I love stories of people who manage to fit such varied roles in their lives. It's so inspiring that they manage, with the same 24 hours/day that we get, to fit so much into it!
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