Women of NASA Lego gets set for review as it reaches 10,000 supporters

10 Aug 2016

Following a valiant effort to merge the worlds of NASA’s woman pioneers and Lego, the Women of NASA Lego proposal has reached the 10,000 supporters it needed to bring it to Lego’s review board.

The Women of NASA Lego campaign was the brainchild of writer and science communicator Maia Weinstock, who felt that a number of influential women who have worked in NASA have not gotten the same appreciation as many of their male colleagues.

So, what better way to educate young children about some of the brightest minds ever to have graced NASA than to launch a new Lego set that features Weinstock’s five favourite NASA icons?

Five NASA icons selected

These five include Sally Ride, astronaut and the first American woman in space; Margaret Hamilton, pioneering computer scientist who developed the onboard flight software for the Apollo missions to the moon; Katherine Johnson, mathematician and space scientist who calculated the trajectories for the Mercury and Apollo missions; Nancy Grace Roman, the astronomer known as the “Mother of Hubble” for her work on the Hubble Space Telescope; and Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman in space.

Now, after some hard work and getting the word out, the Lego Ideas campaign for the project has surpassed the necessary 10,000 supporters mark, meaning a Lego review board will now decide on its fate this September.

In its official response, Lego said of the project: “You have rocketed your way to the 10,000-supporter milestone, seemingly supported by the entire internet, and you’ve done so by educating us about these particular women’s achievements in the US space programme and STEM in general, but, beyond that, showing us all that there are always plenty of very hard-working and talented individuals who go unrecognised for their accomplishments.”

This has been a very short turnaround for a campaign that only began on 18 July and, as Weinstock points out on the campaign’s update page, supporters will know by January whether the Women of NASA idea will make it onto the shelves.

In response to the supporters who have brought the Women of NASA Lego concept this far, Weinstock said: “Thanks again, everyone, and don’t forget to – in the words of Sally Ride – always reach for the stars!”

The Women of NASA Lego design was among those chosen by Siliconrepublic.com as one of five tools and toys encouraging science and logic in the classroom.

Margaret Hamilton Lego figurine image via Maia Weinstock/Flickr

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic