LaTunia is an aerospace engineering graduate of Mississippi State University. Her career at NASA Langley Research Center spans more than 2 decades to-date, starting as a Research Engineer around 1998* and becoming a Senior Research Scientist in 2017* (*years approximate) 2/10
During that time, LaTunia has worked in the Flow Physics & Control Branch of NASA LaRC, pushing the boundaries in flow control research and development. Flow control has the potential to adjust the flow around aircraft wing and empennage, to reduce drag and fuel burn 3/10
#Thread of responses from women in aerodynamics to the question, 'what would you like to see in order for women's career progression in your field to be sustained and better supported?'
Responses incl. career flexibility, mentoring and more women in leadership roles #WomeninSTEM
1. "I think young female engineers need to see more female role models and mentors in my field. Having a visible example of someone that looks like you and is succeeding in their field is important. Having an opportunity to meet with a mentor like that can be very powerful."
2. "I would like to see that any career promotion is based on own merits and value added to the company or the society independently of the gender. I want that women are measured with the same rules as men and are given equal opportunities."
2nd #Thread of responses from women in aerodynamics to the question, 'what do you currently see as being the major obstacle to women entering your field?'
Responses incl gender career stereotypes from an early age, lack of self-esteem and lack of female role models #WomeninSTEM
1. "I think that there is not enough awareness of female role-models in my field. There need to be more initiatives that allow young women to connect with female role-models so that they can be inspired and motivated to follow in their footsteps."
2. "Discouragement from teachers in high school to pursue a STEM career and an unwelcoming atmosphere in technical universities."
1st #Thread of responses from women in aerodynamics to the question, 'what barriers/challenges have you faced/overcome in your career path?'
Overwhelmingly, discrimination, issues related to being the only woman in their place of work, and childcare were cited most #WomeninSTEM
1. "In several of my positions, I have been the first woman hired. There have been challenges proving that I am as intelligent and capable as my male colleagues. I have faced bias, as well as discrimination in pay and acknowledgment of my capabilities."
2. "I have not had any barrier for being a woman but I think sometime I have created my own barriers: low ambition, being too prudent and now I realize I had to think bigger to achieve bigger things. My main challenge has being to juggle my work and my role as mum of 3 children."