Women in Engineering (January 2016)

Forbes recently announced its annual lists of 30 Under 30. For 2016, 600 “of the brightest young entrepreneurs” were selected from 20 different sectors. Several Tau Bates were selected for the honor, including Natalya A. Brikner, CA X ’09, the CEO and co-founder of Accion Systems. According to the manufacturing and industry report, Brikner and her co-founder at Accion are “working to commercialize ion propulsion technology for small satellites using a liquid ionic propellant that is non-toxic and non-explosive.”


Peshani Herath, MS B 2015, was recently profiled by the HottyToddy.com (MS). Herath is a senior double majoring in geological engineering and physics at the University of Mississippi. She is a native of Oxford, MS, who spent the summers of 2013 and 2014 as an intern with NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland.

Read the article for details on her undergraduate experience, her senior thesis, and her future plans that include attending graduate school to study tectonics with an emphasis on structure.


Four female NASA astronauts were recently profiled as those interested in being part of the first human landing on Mars. The mission could be as much as 15 years away, but according to Glamour “unlike the 1960s race to the moon, this time women are playing pivotal roles – building rockets, designing space suits, and controlling the remote rovers that are already sending momentous insights back from Mars.”

Nicole Aunapu Mann, MD G ’99, is one of the women astronauts that participated in the Q&A about becoming an astronaut and a potential trip to Mars. She is a Major, U.S. Marine Corps, serving as an integrated product team lead at the U.S. Naval Air Station. Mann is also an F/A 18 pilot, graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy (in mechanical engineering), and graduate of the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School. Click here to read her answers to the questions and the answers of the four other female NASA astronauts.


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