Mareena Robinson Snowden became the first black woman to earn a Ph.D. in nuclear engineering at M.I.T. this year and we’re like, ”Yassss sis, you betta DO that!!”
According to CNBC, her degree was a culmination of 11 years of post-secondary study. She was often the only woman or black person in her nuclear engineering classes but she took that as an opportunity to shine and represent!
“I had a picture of Katherine Johnson on my wall right after ‘Hidden Figures’ came out, because she was a model for me,” said Snowden, who did undergrad at Florida A&M University. “People ask me all the time, ‘Who’s your role model?’ and you know, you pick and choose from different places. And it was like now, I have a tangible woman. I have Katherine Johnson, who was a mathematician and a black woman killing it.”
She took to Instagram to say she’s grateful for every part of her experience — the highs and lows. “Every person who supported me and those who didn’t. Grateful for a praying family, a husband who took on this challenge as his own, sisters who reminded me at every stage how powerful I am, friends who inspired me to fight harder,” she wrote. “Grateful for the professors who fought for and against me. Every experience on this journey was necessary, and I’m better for it.”