Leigh Estabrooks, the invention education officer at the Lemelson-MIT Program, was recently awarded the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) 2020 WE Local Engaged Advocate Award in her home state of North Carolina. Estabrooks received the award for her contributions to the advancement of women in engineering. She has engaged young women in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) through inventing over the past 15 years at the Lemelson-MIT Program, part of MIT’s School of Engineering.
“I invent inventors,” says Estabrooks when asked about her role as the invention education officer. “I try to help students understand that ‘inventor’ isn't an elite status, and that all kids, all students can invent — including female students. I am honored to receive this award from SWE and will continue working hard to encourage girls to consider inventing solutions to help others.”