On Friday, December 9th, the White House honored twelve local leaders as White House Champions of Change in the effort to recruit and retain girls and women in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. Among those who were honored as Champions of Change there are four remarkable African American women who are all active in the realm of academia, the community, public and private sectors. Earlier today these leaders, Bianca Bailey, Angela Byars Winston, Avis Yates Rivers, and Tamara Brown each discussed creative ways to inspire and encourage young and adult women on the careers and opportunities that are prevalent and available in the fields of science and technology. Each come from different stories and backgrounds; from currently attending college, work as a psychologist, CEO of a technology firm, and a founder of a local technology awareness program, all share a common thread in their passion to promote the sciences and progress for all women.
Many across the Washington area have been diligent in heeding the call to service and have dedicated their careers, time, and resources to ensuring women and girls are participating in the STEM fields. Of the honorees, the four African American women all have different backgrounds and have had the opportunity to reach out to underserved populations. Each have taken great strides to reduce the barriers that drive many girls and women to turn away from high-paying, highly rewarding careers as the Nation’s top innovators. They are each great examples of ordinary Americans taking action to encourage young girls and women to pursue careers in fields that have historically been occupied mostly by men. President Obama has urged every one of us to do our part to get America back on track and these women are outstanding examples of individuals helping to make changes in their community.
During the Champions of Change event, each shared their unique story and offered exceptional ideas for engaging women on being enthusiastic about careers in the STEM fields. They exemplify how so many Americans across the country are working individually and collectively to improve the disparities that persist within their communities. For many, simply having the dialogue will help improve the knowledge and understanding, and potentially open the window for consideration in these fields. Using these four African American women as examples, we can all do our part and support the promotion of young girls and women across America in the STEM fields and help to produce the Nation’s next top innovators.