It was recently International Women in Engineering Day and we thought, what better way to celebrate than to highlight some of the females who, despite eras of suppression, overcame adversity and paved the way for the next generation of manufacturers and engineers – allowing them to put their own stamp on the world?
Did you know that computer programming can be traced all the way back to the Victorian times? Well, let us introduce you to Ada Lovelace. Her intelligence was highly praised by another famous engineer, Charles Babbage, after she became deeply fascinated with his Analytical Engine.
After Ada translated a short Italian article about Analytical Engines to publish in England, Babbage requested her to expand on this as she had such a deep understanding of the design and functions. The finished article was about three times longer than the original and also contains her own theories surrounding computer programming, as well as other potential uses for the machine. Lovelace’s piece not only shows greater detail and understanding, but it was the first to be published. Ada Lovelace is therefore known as the first computer programmer and was highlighted by Babbage for her outstanding abilities.
A short time after the publication of her work, Lovelace sadly died, and the Analytical Engine remained a design until years later when her work inspired the creation of one of the first modern computers in the 1940s.
Specialising in hair products specifically for African-American women, Sarah Breedlove, who is known famously known as Madam C.J Walker, became the one of the first females to become a self-made millionaire. It was back in 1910 that the Madam C.J Walker Manufacturing Company headquarters was built in Indianapolis, after years in a smaller factory she had purchased. Several years of hard work finally paid off when she not only built the new factory, but Walker’s manufacturing company went on to create a hair salon along with a beauty school and laboratory, where her workers were educated in both practical sales and research development.
The factory was an incredible source of employment for women in that era and stood as a powerhouse of empowerment. Madam C.J Walker went on to give her female workers training in business and financially oriented skills that would help them in the future. It’s estimated that she educated about 20,000 women to help sell and produce her products.
Bulletproof vests and helmets. They’re just a few of the many different pieces of protective clothing that are essential to our safety. Well, you have Stephine Kwolek to thank for just how protective the fabric is. Whilst being Well-known for the invention of Kevlar, Kwolek has also filed serval other patents, although none of which matched the success of her first invention.
From a young age Stephine Kwolek was interested in fabrics. Although in the beginning it seemed as though a career as a fashion designer was her calling, Kwolek ended up getting a job at a medical company to help her save for medical school. This was where her interest in fabrics was ignited. Within the company she researched a method of turning polymers into synthetic fibres, and after some resistance form the company, she was allowed to run the polymers through a spinneret. This method created a fibre that was stronger than any other fibre she had encountered
Are you looking to take the next big step in your manufacturing and engineering future? Or wanting to hire top talent? Well, Theo James Recruitment can help with that.