Katherine Johnson

A week of women in STEM: Katherine Johnson

Continuing our series of incredible women in STEM, we introduce Katherine Coleman Goble Johnson. Perhaps you have heard of Ms. Johnson, as she is one of the African-American mathematicians featured in the book and film, Hidden Figures.

Some additional fun facts about Ms. Johnson:

  • ​​She started high school at age 10 and graduated from West Virginia State University (WVSU) at the age of 18, and earned degrees in both mathematics and French
  • She was a teacher for 15 years
  • She had a nearly 35-year career with NASA where she co-authored 21 technical papers
  • She performed the complex calculations that sent astronauts, including John Glenn, into orbit and back in the early 1960s and to the moon in 1969
  • In 2015, at age 97, President Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • A few weeks ago (August 25, 2018), a statue in her honor was installed at her alma mater, WVSU

Watch this 2-minute video from Biography abut Ms. Johnson:

This post is the third in our Women in STEM series in celebration of Ada Lovelace Day–celebrated each year on the second Tuesday in October.