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Inspiration, Story, Uncategorized

A Woman Is Not Only For Making Goll Rotis

Combatting the negative extremist views against Women in Science, Dr. Nergis Mavalvala serves as a pride for the nation. As a Pakistani born, Mavalvala came to the US to attend Wellesley College, and all women’s college in Massachusetts where she graduated in 1990 already with a publication in Physical Review B: Condensed Matter. Afterwards, she joined the graduate program at MIT where she met Dr.Rainer Weiss beginning her career in astrophysics.
Her graduate research started proof-of-concept: building table-top interferometers designing an automatic alignment system which would be needed for the experiment on a much larger scale. Eventually, her work was incorporated in the design of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory, also known as LIGO, which is used to detect the presence of gravitational waves using two mirrors and the idea that a gravitational wave will contract one of the arms, causing a miss-match in phase for a beam that has been split along the two arms.
She joined the faculty at MIT in 2002 where she acknowledges the importance of mentoring students, recalling her supportive chemistry teacher in Pakistan who let her work with chemical reagents in the lab outside of school. She has been passing her excitement of science to her own students. Dr. Mavalvala continues to be recognized for her amazing work by being named one of 23 McArthur Fellows, an unrestricted award given to those who are creative, have significant accomplishments and have prospect for future advancements, in 2010. She then was also recipient of the Joseph F. Keithley Award for Advances in Measurement Science in 2013.

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