Monday, January 19, 2015

Yes, MLK saved Uhura—and she brought diversity to NASA's real space faces

Dot-connecting time to Star Trek, on this Martin Luther King Jr. Day: 

Yes, MLK "saved" Uhura, via Nichelle Nichols' famous tale—but that in turn allowed, and led directly 10 years later, to her incredible NASA outreach mission and some of our most iconic faces in space, giving us the diverse shuttle corps we came to know—and some real-life IDIC in action.

In Star Trek's own way....THANKS one more time, Dr. King.

Nichelle Nichols On Gene Roddenberry
And Dr. King's Fateful Advice
"… As a result of Nichelle Nichols’ efforts of space exploration evangelism work over the last four months of 1977, NASA received 8,400 applications, 1,649 from women and nearly 1,000 from minorities. 
Here is the NASA leader who is responsible for inspiring the recruitment of Sally K. Ride, the first American woman in space, Judith A. Resnik, the second U.S. female astronaut and first Jewish-American in space, Mae Jemison, the first African-American female astronaut (in TNG role with Nichelle, above), Ellison Onizuka, the first Asian-American in space and the first African-African American male astronauts, Guion Bluford and Ronald McNair.
Nichols' charismatic recruitment method increased the number of applications from women sixteenfold, and from people of color thirtyfold."

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