Friday, August 3, 2012

Sally Ride (1951-2012), a true inspiration for present and future generations of women.

"When I was a girl, I had a teacher who encouraged my interest in science. She challenged me to be curious, to ask questions, and to think about things for myself. She helped build my self-confidence. All of these helped me to become a scientist and an astronaut.” — Sally Ride, Ph.D. 1951-2012.

Sally Ride was a physicist and the first American woman in space and from this platform she reached toward countless girls and young women (and not so young too) to inspire them to prepare themselves for the future studying science and engineering. A future not too far ahead, since the U.S. Department of Labor Workforce projections indicate that 15 of the 20 fastest growing occupations in 2014 will require significant science or mathematics training to successfully compete for a job. Are we ready for this?

STEM education is hot. It’s a need that's not been fulfilled. Sally Ride Science festivals are tremendous mind-changing programs for young girls. And young girls love science. I know it. I have participated in the Houston festivals and the classes and events are always packed. After my talks, young scientists-in-the making approached me with questions, bursting with excitement. What an inspiration for those of us trying to inspire our young audience!

Sally Ride has left us with an tremendous example of dedication and hard work that any girl and young woman can look up to when following their dreams. I am looking forward to being part of the festival this fall and also to continue my contribution to inspire and educate young minds with my writings about science, nature and technology.

Sally Ride reached for the stars and touched them. It can be done! One day at a time. One class at a time. One book at a time. One girl at a time.

Check other STEM Friday blog posts


  1. Great post--Sally Ride and Ellen Ochoa are two of my favorite people!

  2. Fabulous choice, and so true about about how inspiring she was.

  3. The festivals in her name sound like a great way to continue her legacy.

  4. Yes, they are, Zoe. They have taken place for years now and they will continue many more. Thank you for posting and hosting.