Happy birthday to Marie Curie, who was born November 7, 1867! I didn’t remember that she won TWO Nobel prizes: one in physics and one in chemistry. Wow. And her daughter Irene Joliot-Curie also won a Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1935.
This got me wondering about the percent of women in STEM today, more than a century after Madame Curie’s Nobel Prizes. Here’s what I learned: biology, chemistry, math and earth sciences degrees are the most equitable, with the percent of women ranging from 64% to 38%. The truly inequitable numbers are found in engineering, physics, and computer science, where women earn only about 20% of the bachelor degrees*. I have a BS in Computer Science (1976), and we were 8 women in a class of 100. From there, the computer science numbers starting rising, peaking around 1988 at 32% and then DROPPING to about 20% in 2018. Why is this? I’m a loss to explain it. If you have any ideas about why this is, or how to change it, I’d love to hear from you. Just reply to this email.
* Bachelor’s Degrees Earned by Women: https://www.aps.org/programs/education/statistics/upload/Bachelor-Women-AllMaj-2020.pdf
See ya on the Net,
Barbara J. Feldman
“Surfing the Net with Kids”
Marie Curie Printable(** for Premium Members only)
Marie Sklodowska Curie (November 7, 1867 – July 4,1934) was a Polish/French physicist and chemist famed for her Nobel Prize winning research. She was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize in 1903 when she shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry with her husband Pierre Curie and physicist Henri Becquerel for their groundbreaking work in radioactivity. Eight years later she became the only woman to win two Nobel Prizes when she won the 1911 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for her discovery of two elements: polonium and radium.
Kids National Geographic: Women Heroes: Marie Curie
“If you’ve ever seen your insides on an x-ray, you can thank Marie Curie’s understanding of radioactivity for being able to see them so clearly.” Curie was born in Poland, and developed an interest in science at an early age. The University of Warsaw, however, did not accept female students, so she moved to Paris to study at the Sorbonne. Visit Kids National Geographic to read this easy biography, and learn about other women heroes.
Lottie: Marie Curie Biography for Kids
Lottie brings us a Curie biography that includes quick facts, quotes, and details about her important discoveries. This biography is also available as a downloadable PDF. Look for the link at the end of the article. “Marie died from Leukemia in 1934. This was caused by exposure to radiation over many years. The damaging effects of radiation exposure had not been known at the time. When scientists handle radioactive material today they have to wear special protective suits.”
Marie Curie: Marie Curie the Scientist
Marie Curie is a British charity that specializing in end-of-life care for terminal patients, inspired by Madame Curie’s work to find treatments for cancer. Their biography includes Marie Curie quotes, and a list of movies about her. “During the First World War, Marie Curie worked to develop small, mobile X-ray units that could be used to diagnose injuries near the battlefront. As Director of the Red Cross Radiological Service, she toured Paris, asking for money, supplies and vehicles which could be converted.”
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Marie Curie Printable
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Quote of the Week
“Discovery consists of looking at the same thing as everyone else does and thinking something different.” ~~ Albert Szent-Gyorgyi ~~ (September 16, 1893 – October 22, 1986) Hungarian physiologist. Click this link to discover more quotes that contain the word: discover.
Surfing the Calendar
Aviation History Month November
Daniel Boone’s Birthday Nov 2, 1734
Marie Antoinette’s Birthday Nov 2, 1755
First Scheduled Radio Broadcast Nov 2, 1920
Over 8 Million American Women Vote for the First Time Nov 2, 1920
International Space Station Inhabited Nov 2, 2000
Panama Independence Day Nov 3, 1903
Italy Victory Day Nov 4, 1918
King Tut’s Tomb Discovered Nov 4, 1922
Lincoln Elected President Nov 6, 1860
Marie Curie’s Birthday Nov 7, 1867
Cortes Conquers Mexico Nov 8, 1519
Kensington Rune Stone Discovered in Minnesota Nov 8, 1898
Hope Diamond Mailed to Smithsonian Nov 8, 1958
Fall of the Berlin Wall Nov 9, 1989
National Young Reader’s Day Nov 9, 2020