National Women's History Month Header
March 2014 Special Edition:  Women in Earth & Space Science


Each year, March is designated as National Women's History Month
to ensure the history of American women will be recognized and
celebrated in schools, workplaces, and communities throughout the country.
The 2014 theme is "Celebrating Women of Character, Courage, and Commitment".

This week the NGCP celebrates Women in Earth & Space Science. 

NGCP Partner

Women@NASA Logo Women@NASA was created in response to the Executive Order, signed March 11, 2009, establishing the White House Council on Women and Girls. The Council aims to provide a coordinated federal response to issues that have a distinct impact on women and girls. The website includes a collection of videos and essays from women across the agency who contribute to NASA's mission in different ways. Their stories illuminate the vibrant community of dedicated women employees who play a vital role at the agency. These stories will inspire girls everywhere to reach for the stars and explore the opportunities available through pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).  

FabFems in Earth & Space Science  

Meredith Danowski is a Project Scientist/Engineer and Research Assistant at Boston University and MIT. As a young girl she watched the space shuttle and was instantly hooked with a passion for space and science and now builds scientific instruments that are launched on rockets. She then uses those instruments to study faraway stars and galaxies. Meredith is passionate about improving the environment of modern research to expand access to the tools of innovation and enjoys sharing her knowledge of science. Meredith's advice to girls is, "Remember that it's not always easy, but in the end, the tough stuff is often the most rewarding. Everyone makes mistakes- it's how you learn from them and continue working that counts." To learn more about Meredith visit her FabFems profile at:  
FabFems Logo                                        
FabFems are enthusiastic about the science and technology work they do and want to inspire a future generation of FabFems. To search profiles of other role models working in Earth and Space Science visit the FabFems website.

Historical Women in Earth & Space Science  

Henrietta Swan Leavitt Henrietta Swan Leavitt (1868-1921) A graduate of Radcliffe College, Leavitt started working at the Harvard College Observatory as a "computer," examining photographic plates in order to measure and catalog the brightness of stars. Leavitt, who was deaf, discovered the relation between the luminosity and the period of Cepheid variable stars. It was her discovery that first allowed astronomers to measure the distance between the Earth and faraway galaxies. After Leavitt's death, Edwin Hubble used the luminosity-period relation for Cepheids to determine that the Milky Way is not the only galaxy in the observable universe, and that the universe is expanding. Learn more about Leavitt at:

Mae Jemison
Mae Jemison (1956- ) 
A chemical engineer, scientist, physician, teacher, and astronaut, Jemison became the first African American woman to travel in space when she went into orbit aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour on September 12, 1992. After graduating from medical school, Jemison joined the Peace Corps, serving as area medical officer. She founded The Jemison Group, which developed ALAFIYA, a satellite-based telecommunications systems intended to improve health care delivery in developing nations. As a professor in the Environmental Studies Program at Dartmouth College, she directed the Jemison Institute for Advancing Technology in Developing Countries. Learn more about Jemison at:
 Earth & Space Science Events and Resources 
nanodays logo NanoDays
March 29-April 6, 2014
A nationwide festival of educational programs about nanoscale science and engineering and its potential impact on the future. Events are organized by participants in the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net) and will occur at science museums, research centers, and universities across the country. Resources are available for download and an online catalog features a variety of educational programs and activities, media, evaluation reports, and tools and guides.

Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) Annual Meeting
Burlingame, CA
August 2-6, 2014
This year's theme "Celebrating Science: Putting Education Best Practices to Work" invites participants to consider how best to share the results of their work, how to improve their practice, and how to make connections across science disciplines. Includes hands-on sessions designed to practice effective techniques for sharing and discussing work. The Galileo Teacher Training Program workshop will be held August 2-3, 2014. The meeting will be held August 4-6, 2014.

World Space Week: October 4-10, 2014
World Space Week consists of space education and outreach events held by space agencies, aerospace companies, schools, planetaria, museums, and astronomy clubs around the world. The United Nations General Assembly declared in 1999 that World Space Week will be held each year from October 4-10. These dates commemorate two events: 1) Oct. 4, 1957: Launch of the first human-made Earth satellite, Sputnik 1, thus opening the way for space exploration. 2) Oct. 10, 1967: The signing of the Treaty on Principles Governing the Activites of States in the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies.

Earth Science Week (ESW): October 12-18, 2014
ESW promotes awareness of the dynamic interactions of the planet's natural and human systems. This year's theme "Earth's Connected Systems" engages young people in exploring the ways that geoscience illuminates natural change processes. Website includes resources for teachers and students on how to plan an event.

Earth Exploration Toolbook (EET): Developed by teams of scientists and educators, EET is a collection of free online Earth system science activities designed for students to develop data skills. Each activity, or chapter, introduces one or more scientific data sets and analysis tools that enable users to explore aspects of the Earth system.

NASA's Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Podcast: Designed to engage middle school students in STEM, NASA's DIY Podcast is a topical collection of downloadable video and audio clips featuring NASA astronauts, scientists, and engineers. Teachers and students can mix and mash the video and audio clips to create their own podcasts.

NASA Mentoring Program for Girls: NASA G.I.R.L.S (Giving Initiative and Relevance to Learning Science) is for girls (grades 5-8) and includes a virtual mentoring program using video chat programs to pair Women @NASA mentors with a young girl anywhere in the country. Applications accepted June 5 - July 2, 2014.

How To Smile Logo Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE): is a collection of free science and math resources designed specifically for non-classroom settings. Search Astronomy under topics for activities relating to Earth, Moon, Sun, and the solar system. Filter results using parameters such as age range, learning time, resource type, and prep time.

  Spread the Word

Help us celebrate Women's History Month by paying tribute to outstanding women in STEM fields with your networks! Here are a few easy and simple ways to spread the word:

  • Like us on Facebook and share our daily posts featuring Women in Aviation and resources for inspiring girls to pursue this exciting STEM field!
  • Follow us on Twitter and retweet or repost our daily tweets to your followers.
  • Share your own stories about women who have inspired you using #WHMSTEM all month long!


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