Women are the unsung heroes of the world that prove how you can be anyone you want to be and do anything you want to do, no matter what stands in your way. Do we even need to mention fighting for the right to vote or equality? We thought not. So perhaps now is a better time than ever to take a look at the female scientists you don’t know but should as we celebrate women from all around the world and their incredible talents.
You might have heard of the name, but do you know what it is that makes Marie Curie so great? Not only did she discover two elements – radium and polonium – but this woman is the only person in the world to have won two different Nobel Prizes for two disciplines thanks to her contributions to physics and chemistry. Although Mary lived between 1867 and 1934, her work towards treating tumors is still the basis of many medical research facilities. Mind. Blown.
This scientist might have passed away in 1916, but her memory will forever live on thanks to her contributions towards medical science. Alice was the first woman to ever graduate from the University of Hawaii with a master’s degree and went on to use her knowledge to help work towards treating leprosy. The disease was quickly taking over the island, and Alice wanted to see it stop. Although she passed away before publishing her results, her treatment went on to save thousands. Thankfully, a later scientist ensured Alice was credited for her work.
Sure, our DNA makes up our entire body, but we would have no idea on its structure if it weren’t thanks to Rosalind Franklin, the scientist was managed to capture the first picture of DNA back in 1952. However, it fell into the wrong hands. In fact, it was shared with Francis Crick and James Watson without Rosalind even getting a say. The pair went on to rewrite their paper on DNA stating that it was a double helix and won a Nobel Prize for their efforts. Rosalind Franklin was only ever mentioned in the footnotes of the paper.
Not all female scientists we should know about have passed away. In fact, Jane Goodall is still inspiring a generation of young female scientists everywhere thanks to her incredible work with chimpanzees. No one ever believed Jane when she spoke about her dreams to move to Africa, but it wasn’t long before she proved them all wrong. Jane now has over five decades of studies underneath her belt that has proved how chimpanzees are able to use tools – a behavior that was once thought to be exclusive to humans.
Dorothy first made a name for herself after confirming the structures of vitamin B12 and penicillin – both studies that won her a Nobel Prize for her contribution to chemistry. However, that wasn’t all. Dorothy was determined to uncover the structure of insulin no matter what it took. After years of battling arthritis, which eventually left her wheelchair-bound, the scientist got confirmation of its structure. Dorothy spent the rest of her life talking about its research as well as raising awareness for diabetes until her death in 1994.
Women rock, don’t they? You might not know about these female scientists, but now is the time to sit back and soak up all the incredible contributions they have made to science over the years. You go, girls.