As a woman, it can sometimes feel extremely challenging to find strong female role models in the media. These days, it seems like popular culture is trying to force a specific type of personality or appearance upon us, making it harder than ever to find our own voices. And as a girl geek, the struggle to find powerful, unstoppable women whom we can relate to is harder than ever before. Sure, we can admire the pretty faces on social media, and we can appreciate the hard work actresses do on the big screen. But what about our fellow lady geeks? Where are they? If you’re looking for nerdy girls who are breaking the mold and forging their own paths, look no further. Here are three geeky women that any of us can aspire to be like!
Trachette Jackson, the Cancer-Fighting Mathematician
When you think of superheroes, what comes to mind? Is it the crime-fighting fellow in a bat suit, taking on the nefarious villains of Gotham city? Or, if you’re feeling more inclusive, maybe you’re thinking of Wonder Woman or Jean Grey. You may not realize that not all heroes wear capes. That’s precisely which is why you need to get to know the work of Trachette Jackson better. This incredible woman has dedicated her life to using math to find a cure for cancer, carefully studying mathematical formulas to see if the secret is hidden somewhere inside them. Dr. Jackson is paving the way to save millions of lives in the coming years, no small feat. Step aside, Wolverine — there’s a new heroine in town!
Anita Sengupta, a Real-Deal Rocket Scientist
If you’ve ever heard the phrase, “How hard can it be? It’s not rocket science, after all!” then Anita Sengupta would probably like to have a word with you. While rocket science may sound a little bit dry and boring, Dr. Sengupta makes it seem anything but when she talks about her job! Her passion in life is atomic physics, and to put it mildly, it’s a little bit out of this world. Literally. She studies atoms at extremely cold temperatures, far above the earth’s atmosphere. Another super impressive thing that she was part of was designing the parachute that helped safely land the Mars rover Curiosity on the red planet. And while her career choice may make her seem a little bit lofty, she’s secretly admitted that her role model growing up was Mr. Spock from Star Trek. (So relatable!)
Melinda Hartwig, Who Studies Ancient Mummies
Raise your hand if you’ve seen The Mummy so many times that you’ve worn out the grooves on your Blu-ray player. Yep. Guilty as charged, right? Well, Melinda Hartwig doesn’t need to watch Brendan Fraser take on scores of scarabs without even breaking a sweat while at her job. No, she’s got much more important things to do. Dr. Hartwig is busy carefully poring over the treasures found hidden deep inside the pyramids in Egypt, taking in all of the information hidden inside them. And before you ask her, no, the treasures aren’t made out of gold. They’re ancient relics and priceless artifacts, all of which she’s carefully cataloging to send to museums across the world. Melinda Hartwig also would like you to know that she’s nothing like Lara Croft. She doesn’t raid these tombs; she shares her findings with the public so everyone can learn from her work!
Amazing Women from All Walks of Life
As women, we’re going to have to deal with our own unique share of adversity and hardships throughout our entire life. We’re going to want to do things with our lives, big things that can help change the world and make it a better place. And you know what? Sometimes you’re going to meet someone who is going to try to tell you no and doesn’t want to see you succeed. Here’s the thing, though. You can’t let them hold you back. Each and every one of these women continued on and persevered in their chosen career path, despite not having a long line of women before them taking the same journey. Sure, it may have been lonely. It might have been more than a little bit scary, too. But you know what? They didn’t give up, and look at them now. If that isn’t inspirational, then what is?