Women Champion Countdown

Welcome to the first day of the month. As we come to the end of March; women’s month, I hope that we will still continue to push the gender equality agenda. This is not a one-month thing! Here at “Under The Microscope we want to keep the fire burning and continue celebrating several African women in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), past and present who have excelled and paved the way for future scientists to come! While our list only highlights 10 scientists, we encourage you to learn more about African Women in STEM on websites like The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences, African Women in Science and Engineering, South African Women in Science and Engineering, Levers in Heels, The Exploratory, African Women in Agricultural Research and Development AfroScientric, and NASAC (Network of African Science Academies) Women In Science – Inspiring Stories from Africa.
Having said that, here are 10 women on our Women Champion Countdown whose
amazing work we want to celebrate!

10. Egypt: Sameera Moussa, March 3, 1917- August 5, 1952. Dr. Moussa was a nuclear physicist who the Atomic Energy for Peace conference. She was also the first woman to work at Cairo University.  
9. Kenya: Wangaari Maathai, April 1 1940-September 25, 2011. Dr. Maathai was an environmental scientist also known for being the first African woman to win the Nobel peace prize.
8. Tanzania:Dr. Julie Makani. Dr. Makani’s work involves understanding the synergy between Sickle cell anemia and factors like malaria, bacterial  infections and stroke, which significantly contribute to illness and death. Her goals are to use sickle cell disease as a model to build scientific and healthcare solutions in Africa that have both local and global relevance.
7. South Africa: Quarraisha Abdool Karim. Dr. Karim is an infectious diseases epidemiologist who wants to understand the evolving HIV epidemic in South Africa. She also studies the factors influencing the acquisition of HIV infection in adolescent girls and is interested in developing strategies to introduce antiretroviral therapy in underprivileged parts of the world.
6. Nigeria: Francisca Nneka Okeke. Dr. Okeke is a professor of Physics at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Her research area is in the world of geomagnetism, atmospheric physics, climate variability, and the equatorial electrojet phenomenon.”
5. Ghana: Regina Honu.Honu founded the Soronko Academy and Tech Needs Girls, Ghana. The Soronko Academy is the first coding and human-centered design school for children and young adults in West Africa.
4.Cameroon: Bih Janet Shufor Fofang: Prof. Fofang’s goal is to increase the number of women in technology in Cameroon, and to give them more decision-making power in STEM. She achieves this by creating innovative ways to teach and equip students in
engineers. She is ensuring that engineers in the future are diverse and well trained.
3. Kenya: Esther Ngumbi. Dr. Ngumbi is a post-doctoral researcher at Auburn University in Alabama. Her research is towards harnessing the power of microbes to promote robust growth and increase tolerance to drought stress in crops thus increasing
food security. She has started several organizations in her home country of Kenya to equip and train farmers and students alike.
2. Rwanda: Claudine Humure: Humure is an engineer who is best known for her efforts and advocacy towards designing and engineering prosthetic limbs that are adaptable to life in the developing world.
1. Ghana: Dr. Selasi Dankwa: Dr. Dankwa is a molecular biologist interested in understanding the mechanism of malaria and next-generation approaches to better understand and combat malaria parasites.

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