Contributions Of American Women Of Color Inventors
The Contributions of American Women of Color Inventors
A recent study highlighted the relatively small number of women of color who hold patents, making it all the more impressive. While the percentage of female patent holders is lower than the average, the list of women over achieving in STEM fields still stands at 21. One example of an African American woman who overachieved is Dr. Shirley Jackson, who became the first African American woman to earn a doctorate in particle physics. Her inventions include fiber-optic cables and touch-tone dialing.
Inventors of color
There are many notable African-American women in the field of science and technology. These women have created numerous innovations that make our lives easier. From a new way to use the toilet to improved lighting, African-American inventors have made many improvements in technology. Here are a few of their most important contributions. Read on to learn about their contributions and learn about their careers. And don’t forget to check out their websites and social media pages for more information.
Their contributions to STEM fields
Since 1990, there has been a significant growth in STEM careers, yet it is surprising that only 9% of STEM workers are women of color. According to a Pew research center, Blacks comprise 11% of the U.S. workforce, but represent only 9% of STEM workers. One notable example of an inventor of color is George Washing Carver, who was born into slavery and later became the first Black student at Iowa State Agricultural College. Despite his race, he was able to earn a degree in agriculture, and he came up with 300 uses for peanuts.
Their ability to sell their inventions to the public
Inventors’ incomes are highly correlated with their race, socioeconomic status, and gender. Children born to parents in the top 1% of the income distribution are 10 times more likely to become inventors than children born to lower-income parents. Additionally, whites are three times more likely to become inventors than blacks. Inventors are also more likely to be men than women, with 82% of inventors being male. While this gap is slowly closing, it will take 118 years before the gender ratio is equal.
Unfortunately, there is little data available on African American women who have patented their inventions. While American patent records are incomplete and often obscure the contributions of women inventors, their stories of success are hardly confined to the U.S. Aspiring women in STEM fields often face greater hurdles than men to sell their inventions. Women inventors face a higher risk of being rejected when they apply for patents alone.
The lack of access to patents for American women of color reveals a number of structural barriers and discriminatory practices. While white women were often discriminated against when applying for jobs, black women faced even greater obstacles. They were rarely accepted into universities, and most STEM fields were closed to women of color. Yet despite these hurdles, these women fought to get their inventions protected and sold to the public.
Patents help individuals profit from their inventions, attract investment, create jobs, and raise the bar for entire communities. Nina Archie, the diversity and tech policy adviser at The Commercializer, says that despite the barriers, American Women of Color inventors’ ability to sell their inventions to the public is still far behind their White counterparts. Despite this, they still account for less than one percent of inventors in the U.S.
In the United States, American Women of Color have made an incredible contribution to the nation. Though they have not always received the credit they deserve, their contributions have made a lasting impact on our lives. Their stories, known as Journeys of Innovation, highlight some of the most noteworthy women inventors. The stories of these women are uplifting and can inspire future generations of innovators. So, let’s look at some examples of their remarkable achievements and the obstacles they faced along the way.
Their struggle to get their inventions patented
Many African-American inventors face barriers to getting their inventions patented. These obstacles include a lack of mentorship, the “motherhood penalty,” and racial discrimination. Additionally, women of color are often overlooked for STEM fields and face a significantly higher bar than their white male counterparts. But these barriers are not the only reason American Women of Color struggle to get their inventions patented.
Though women have faced considerable obstacles throughout history, progress is being made every year. Only about 10% of patent holders in the U.S. are women, despite making up half of the nation’s doctorate-level scientists and engineers. Furthermore, women have been disproportionately denied patent protection when they apply as sole applicants. It’s worth remembering, however, that women were the first to invent the wheel, and they are now the most likely to win a patent for their inventions.
Before the Civil War, Black people were not allowed to patent their own inventions. As a result, Jefferson Davis unsuccessfully tried to patent a propeller invented by an enslaved man. Although the impact of slavery is long gone, descendants of former slaves struggle to gain their due in the U.S. patent system. However, many African American inventors and women of color are making their way forward by overcoming these barriers and securing their rights.
Another example of an inventor of color who faced barriers to getting her invention patented is Mary E. Goode, who was born into slavery. She had to endure a long working schedule in order to care for her family and husband. Nevertheless, she managed to patent five inventions by the time she was in her forties. Her first invention, a fold-out bed, became a hit and was patented in 1969.
Another example of an American Woman of Color who has overcome obstacles to patenting her inventions is Jeanie Low. Low, who received U.S. Patent No. 5,094,515 for the Kiddie Stool, was frustrated by her difficult task of reaching the sink when she was washing her hands. She was frustrated with her plastic stool and eventually designed and constructed a folding stool that hinged to a vanity under the sink.
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