The word “trailblazer” is often associated with the names of important people that have made big changes for the world in the fields of science or technology, and yes, they are absolutely incredible. However, people who change the game don’t always walk in the landscape of their own shadow. I believe some of the greatest influencers are the ones that chose to live in freedom by pursuing the life they wanted to live. And I consider my mother to be a trailblazer in a league of her own.
My mother enrolled in Michigan Tech in 1971 as an undeclared engineering major. The second woman in her family to go to college, she was one of the 500 women on a campus of 6,000, fierce to make known that she wasn’t at the college to find a mate. She was there because she didn’t see her position as a woman as hindrance to a career, but as a human being pursuing the thing she loved.