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Meet Mareena Robinson Snowden, First Black Woman To Earn A Ph.d In Nuclear Engineering From MIT

The movie Hidden Figures showed how women in science can be as good, sometimes better, than their male counterparts. Mareena Robinson Snowden has shown black women can do it too.


In 2017, Mareena Robinson Snowden did not just break the proverbial glass ceiling, she shattered it into smithereen when she became the first Black woman to earn a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Nuclear Engineering.

There are many awe-inspiring features in this story. First, is that she, in her way, has shown that black women can partake in the STEM revolution. Secondly,  the feat was achieved in a top-notch school like MIT.

According to her personal website, the Miami native graduated from Florida A&M University with a Bachelors of Science degree in Physics. Snowden then went on to attend MIT, where she did her dissertation research on detectors for future nuclear arms control treaties.

Taking to her instagram page on June 9, Snowden had this to say of her fear:

“No one can tell me God isn’t. Grateful is the best word I have to describe how I feel. Grateful for every part of this experience – highs and lows. Every person who supported me and those who didn’t. Grateful for a praying family, a husband who took on this challenge as his own, sisters who reminded me at every stage how powerful I am, friends who inspired me to fight harder. Grateful for the professors who fought for and against me. Every experience on this journey was necessary, and I’m better for it.”

We are proud of Dr Mareena Snowden and other black women in STEM and other fields who are showing us all that stereotypes have nothing to do with excellence.

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