Next Stop: Mars with Mae Jemison

by Summer Ash

Last Wednesday I had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Mae Jemison in person as part of a celebration of National Geographic's upcoming special on Mars (part documentary, part drama). Dr. Jemison was a science advisor on the project and helped the team to accurately portray astronaut behavior in crisis as well as how the bunks of the spacecraft should be designed. And she would know, having flown on the Space Shuttle as a Mission Specialist for STS-47.  

After a panel discussion to open the day, I was fortunate enough have Dr. Jemison all to myself for almost half and hour! Knowing I would have this amazing opportunity, I came prepared thanks to Celine...

In addition to personally wearing one of Slow Factory's Women Who Inspire scarves featuring Dr. Jemison along with fellow astronaut, Jan Davis, Celine gave me the scarf of Dr. Jemison alone to present to her in person. So before my time with her was up, I showed her the full design on the scarf I was wearing and told her all about the Women Who Inspire collection. She was amazed such a thing even existed. To her surprise, I then gave her the second scarf and needless to say, she loved both. I managed to get this photo of both of us rocking our scarves in celebration of women everywhere. 

The day ended with a screening of the first episode of the MARS miniseries so clearly I had to represent the red planet with some more Slow Factory

If you don't know Dr. Jemison's work already, I highly recommend reading up on her. A former dancer, she entered college at age 16 and finished medical school by age 25. She then did a stint in the Peace Corps before going on to become the first African American women in space (such a slacker!). One of her current projects it the 100 Year Starship which aims to make interstellar travel a reality in the next 100 years by "including the broadest swath of people and human experience in understanding, shaping and implementing this global aspiration."

National Geographic's MARS airs nationwide on Monday, November 14th. You can already stream the first episode online and there are three more to come. It's a stunning mix of science and narrative jumping between the present in 2016 and the future first crewed mission to Mars in 2033. It will inspire the hell out of you. 

Summer Ash is the Director of Outreach for Columbia University’s Department of Astronomy. Having been both a rocket scientist and a radio astronomer, she’s now harnessing her powers for science communication. She is the "In-House Astrophysicist" for The Rachel Maddow Show and has written for The AtlanticScientific American, Slate, and Nautilus Magazine. She tweets as@Summer_Ash and is also one-half of Startorialist.

Filed under: astronaut astronauts awe event feminism going to space inspiration mae jemison mars national geographic nyc scarf scarves science space who wears slow factory women who inspire

Women who Inspire

by Celine Semaan Vernon

SLOW FACTORY FW2016

A collection celebrating women

Slow Factory’s Fall 2016 Collection is inspired by all the women behind great scientific progress. Growing up, girls are not exposed enough to female role models in fact, in 2016 a survey asked children to draw draw a firefighter, a surgeon, and a fighter pilot to which the students drew 66 pictures in total -- but only five of them depict women. Inspired by the movie Hidden Figures about the life of Katherine Johnson, Slow Factory created 8 scarves, each celebrating a woman who inspires in her own right:

Here are the 8 women we printed for Fall 2016

  • Katherine Johnson, American physicist, space scientist, and mathematician.
  • Amelia Earhart, American aviation pioneer and author.
  • Kathryn D. Sullivan, American geologist and a former NASA astronaut. A crew member on three Space Shuttle missions, she is the first American woman to walk in space.
  • Mae Jemison, American physician and NASA astronaut. She became the first African-American woman to travel in space.
  • Margaret Hamilton, Director of the Software Engineering Division[2] of the MIT Instrumentation Laboratory, which developed on-board flight software for the Apollo space program.
  • Nancy Roman, American astronomer who was one of the first female executives at NASA.
  • Christa McAuliffe, American astronaut, one of the seven crew members killed in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster.
  • Jan Davis & Mae Jemison, Astronauts Dr. N. Jan Davis (left) and Dr. Mae C. Jemison (right) were mission specialists on board the STS-47 mission.

The collection will be modelled and broadcasted on our Instagram stories, on Friday September 23rd at 10AM EST by the amazing women and friends who inspire millions:

  • Miki Agrawal, Co-Founder of Thinx Underwear, Patriarchal Proof Underwear
  • Piera Gilardi, Co-Founder and Creative Director of Refinery 29
  • Alaa Murabit, UN commissioner Women's Health & Sustainability
  • Anastasia Genicoff: Black Lives Matter Advocate and Model
  • Celine Semaan Vernon, Creative Director & Founder Slow Factory and Activist

Filed under: fashion activism women who inspire