Meet Our Gems 2017-02-27T17:38:10+00:00

Meet Our 44 STEM Gems

Mireille Akilian
Mireille AkilianHysteroscopy Technologist
“Fear of something is not knowing it. If you have an interest in a specific area, just research or practice it. The fear will go away[.]”
Erika Ebbel Angle
Erika Ebbel AngleBio-technologist
“Find mentors who can support you… It means being proactive. You’re not expected to know how to do it all yourself. None of us were born with all this knowledge.”
Susan Athey
Susan AtheyEconomist
“There has never been a better time for young women to enter the field of economics. Google, Facebook, eBay, Pandora, Uber, Instagram, Microsoft, Coursera — all of these firms, as well as the latest start-up firms, need economists.”
Cynthia Breazeal
Cynthia BreazealSocial Robotics Engineer
“I would much rather build something and interact with it than philosophize about it.”
Shaherose Charania
Shaherose CharaniaStartup Champion and Entrepreneur
“Try, try, try, and if you fail, try again. And if you fail, try again.”
Jennifer Chayes
Jennifer ChayesNetwork Scientist
“If you’re going to be a scientist, you have to challenge the norm.”
Maria Chudnovsky
Maria ChudnovskyGraph Theory Mathematician
“My work is somewhere between solving a crossword puzzle and making a painting. It’s about pure logic and pure aesthetics.”
Lorrie Faith Cranor
Lorrie Faith CranorOnline Security Expert
“I’ve always thought of myself as an interdisciplinary person. It’s a great career path for people who have many interests.”
Carol Espy-Wilson
Carol Espy-WilsonElectrical Engineer
“Don’t let fear keep you from doing anything. Face your fears.”
Inez Fung
Inez FungAtmospheric Scientist
“My reward isn’t money. You can’t compensate for that magic moment when you say ‘Aha’ and you find the answer.”
Jeanne Gang
Jeanne GangArchitect
“When you find something that really resonates with you, something that makes you stay up all night thinking about it, that’s when you know you’ve found the right path for you.”
Helene Gayle
Helene GayleGlobal Health Scientist
“Read books about everyday people who decided they wanted to be part of something larger than themselves.”
Laurie Glimcher
Laurie GlimcherImmunologist
“Be a risk taker. Never be afraid to try something new, and be as stubborn as a bull. Laboratory breakthroughs are never made by being cautious.”
Christine Goforth
Christine GoforthEntomologist
“A lot of the very best scientists and other STEM leaders are people who have turned something they’re obsessed with into a career.”
Paula Hammond
Paula HammondChemical Engineer
“Some will be surprised to see you at the table but you can’t allow that to intimidate you. Turn it into an opportunity to engage and instruct. Prove them wrong.”
Trachette Jackson
Trachette JacksonCancer Modeling Mathematician
“Once I found out math had the power and potential to address the world’s most pressing problems, it made me vigorously pursue a career in math.”
Janet Jansson
Janet JanssonMicrobiologist
“I loved to go to the lab in the mornings and check the results of my experiments.”
Mary Lou Jepsen
Mary Lou JepsenHolography and Virtual Reality Technologist
“Half the kids in the world don’t have electricity at home. Eighty percent of the schools that we’re going into don’t have electricity. So we had to design a laptop that was also the infrastructure.”
Michele Koons
Michele KoonsArchaeologist
“It’s not an easy thing to have it all. But you have to follow your gut. If you want it, you can do it.”
Sarah Kovaleski
Sarah KovaleskiNuclear Engineer
“If there is a subject that sparks your curiosity and your imagination, follow it and see where it takes you. There will always be people who think you can’t do something. You don’t have to believe them.”
Bryna Kra
Bryna KraDynamical Systems Mathematician
“I asked a lot of questions. Maybe my peers thought I was dumb, but I didn’t care. There is no question in math that’s too stupid to ask.”
Debbie Lawrence
Debbie LawrenceGeophysicist
“Have integrity. Stay on top of technology. Once you’ve
got your degree, it’s only the beginning.”
Sylvia Lee
Sylvia LeeEnvironmental Engineer
“That single day made me want to go into engineering. Had I not gone to that, I don’t think I would have known what engineering was. This is why I believe so much in the power of exposure.”
Stacy Lindborg
Stacy LindborgBiostatistician
“I remember them looking at me and thinking that I was young and inept. They totally underestimated me. But it motivated me and turned up my juices to where I was like ‘I’ll prove you wrong.’
Barbara Liskov
Barbara LiskovComputer Scientist and Engineer
“I was interested in doing it, there was an opportunity, so I just did it.”
Holly Liu
Holly LiuInternet Gaming Technologist
“Think big.”
Kimber Lockhart
Kimber LockhartWeb Application Engineer
“I have such a visceral reaction to expectations that limit my potential; I react by proving that I can.”
Pilar Molina Lopez
Pilar Molina LopezAnimation Technologist
“Find out what you want, work hard for it and be patient. Hard work is essential. You will find mentors… Ask them for help and advice. Surround yourself with people who are better than you are.”
Andrea Luecke
Andrea LueckeSolar Energy Technologist
“Work hard and network as much as you possibly can. I don’t buy into gender roles or gender stereotypes and don’t think that women are inherently more instinctual or smarter or that men are better negotiators. We are different but equal.”
Tonya Manning
Tonya ManningActuary
“Don’t try to copy someone else’s style. Be who you are. That is what you will always be best at doing.”
Sara McAllister
Sara McAllisterMechanical and Fire Engineer
“I went from being the little girl handing my dad tools while he was under the car to being the one under the car. I wanted to know more about combustion because, well, that’s what makes cars work.”
Marcia Kemper McNutt
Marcia Kemper McNuttOceanographer and Geophysicist
“My mother and father allowed me to pursue every dream, unfettered, regardless of whether they understood anything I was doing.”
Anna Nagurney
Anna NagurneyNetwork Systems Mathematician
“Math is like a sport — the more you use your muscles, the better you get at it.”
Karen Olson
Karen OlsonForensic Scientist
“Overcome your fears by gaining experience and practice.”
Heather Payne
Heather PayneComputer Coding Creator
“Be extremely ambitious. People should learn to create — not just consume — things on the web. Even if you never actually launch a website, knowing that you can is empowering.”
Carolyn Porco
Carolyn PorcoPlanetary Scientist
“…When I’m old and looking back on my life, I will feel that I did the coolest thing anyone could ever possibly do with their life.”
Ainissa Ramirez
Ainissa RamirezMaterials Engineer
“Using science, tech and math, you have the tools to change the world.”
Lisa Randall
Lisa RandallTheoretical Physicist
“If people learn more about physics and are aware of it, then they won’t be so afraid of it.”
Pardis Sabeti
Pardis SabetiComputational Biologist and Geneticist
“Find a voice, which requires buckling down and really getting to know yourself, and trust yourself.”
Rachel Schutt
Rachel SchuttData Scientist
“My father told me that I should study math even though it was hard, because it’s the hard things we should tackle in life. That made sense to me.”
Debbie Sterling
Debbie SterlingProduct Designer and Mechanical Engineer
“Whether it’s in Mechanical Engineering 101 in college or in their third-grade science class, girls should never question their value, ability or contribution.”
Stefani Wildhaber
Stefani WildhaberUrban Planner and Designer
“I always enjoyed building things. I always had a project that involved creating something.”
Melanie Matchett Wood
Melanie Matchett WoodNumber Theory Mathematician
“Math is something that you get better at by practicing and doing more and by hard work. It’s not a matter of having a math brain or not having a math brain. It’s not as if you can be a math person or not a math person. It’s something that by working at and by practicing, you will get better at. The ‘I’m not so good at it’ excuse is a statement about how much work you’ve put in.”
Kaliya Young
Kaliya YoungInternet Identity Advocate
“I hit a wall in high school. Math was taught in a way that was hard for me to learn it — very linearly, and I learn holistically.”

Women need role models and they need mentors. Women who are successful should coach other women. When you have people like that as a good example to other women, change happens.

IBM Venture Capital Director Deborah Magid