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Butterfly Pavilion's Pollinator Place is now closed. The space will reopen on Friday, May 3rd as our new Origins: Building Life exhibit!

Women continue to be underrepresented in many STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) fields, facing challenges such as gender bias, stereotypes, and a lack of representation. 
According to a 2021 study conducted by the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, about 35% of women were employed in STEAM occupations. Additionally, the number of minorities within that percentage are even smaller. 
Throughout Women’s History Month, Butterfly Pavilion is showcasing four historical women who have revolutionized invertebrate research, conservation, and education as we know it. Butterfly Pavilion is also excited to highlight the various women within the organization who work in STEAM including scientists, researchers, educators and more. 

Meet our featured women in STEAM below!

Meet: Maria Sibylla Merian

Maria Merian is a 17th-century entomologist who defied norms to study insects in their habitats. Through meticulous observation and illustrations, she pioneered insect study, documenting metamorphosis and life cycles. Her work laid the foundation for modern entomology, leaving an artistic and revolutionary imprint on science.


Meet: Sophie Lutterlough

Sophie Lutterlough began working at the Smithsonian as the first woman elevator operator but her deep interest in insects led her to become an insect preparator in 1957. After a few years of hard work and dedication, she was appointed as a research assistant, breaking racial and gender barriers that opened a world of new opportunities for others to follow their passions.


Meet: Dr. Sylvia Earle

Known as “Her Deepness,” Dr. Sylvia Earle spent most of her life exploring and advocating for the conservation of the world’s oceans. Her tireless efforts bridge science and advocacy, fostering a deeper appreciation for the interconnectedness of our planet’s ecosystems while inspiring future generations to pursue careers in STEAM.



Meet: Dr. Corrie Moreau

Dr. Corrie Moreau is an esteemed entomologist and biologist, renowned for pioneering research on ant evolution and biodiversity. With a Harvard Ph.D., she’s held positions at the Field Museum and Cornell University, advocating for science communication and diversity in STEAM. 

Investing in women in STEAM not only benefits individuals by providing equal opportunities but also propels society forward by ensuring that the best minds, regardless of gender, are contributing to advancements that shape our future. 
By dismantling barriers and creating an inclusive space, we accelerate progress, promote diversity, and create a STEAM community that thrives on the talents and contributions of everyone. Supporting women in STEAM isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s a strategic imperative for building a more innovative, equitable, and prosperous future. 
We encourage future scientists of all ages, genders and races to visit Butterfly Pavilion and learn about our featured women in STEAM and see how they can get involved in STEAM-related activities.