The movie Hidden Figures was released nationwide on January 13th, and has already grossed over 27 million dollars at the box office! The movie is about the struggles of three genius African American women who helped with a major launch for NASA. Ultimately, their accomplishments helped change the way NASA viewed the intelligence of African American women.
Award-winning rocket scientist, author and TV personality, Olympia LePoint is a real life hidden figure. She has helped NASA launch their Endeavour, Discovery, Columbia, and Atlantis Space Shuttles, along with 28 other space shuttle missions. After watching the film — which premiered earlier in select theaters, Olympia felt compelled to write her own article about it on The Huffington Post. In the article, she explained that she was “simultaneously inspired and surprised by what [she] relived through its scenes.” As a young female rocket scientist of color herself, Olympia related to the film on a deeper level than most people.
To further illustrate her point, Olympia drew three specific comparisons between the movie and her own experiences:
1. Women bonded together in the bathroom for a powerful purpose.
When she was first hired as a rocket scientist, Olympia was given advice to never let the male engineers see her cry. If her, or any of the other women, had to they were supposed to do it in the ladies room. According to her coworkers, this was to prevent any reason to give a man a job instead of a woman. In her article she explains, “In the process, I unknowingly turned off my feelings in order to execute the work. I did this action for the sake of science. My love of science overruled any experience, and it gave other women hope. And in turn, these ladies gave me hope.”
2. Extra challenges still exist for women of color in STEM.
Similar to the characters in the film, Olympia explained that she would stay at work hours after everyone went home, because she knew she had to work twice as hard. There was even a point in her career when a program manager suggested he present her work instead. He claimed there was no protocol for young women to give technical briefings, but Olympia declined and successfully presented her hard work to 500 NASA officials.
3. True leaders are individuals who stand up to inequality and promote knowledge in the face of challenge.
In Hidden Figures, several of the people in charge make a point to stand up and create change for the three African American women scientists. Olympia had a similar experience, after becoming the youngest person in her company to receive a prestigious award, her car was keyed with racial slurs. After this, her manager helped her become courageous by giving her powerful advice that helped her handle the negativity.
Olympia LePoint is able to relate to the struggles and joys of the movie Hidden Figures, which speaks volumes. In addition to being a rocket scientist, Olympia is an author, professional speaker and educator. In her presentations, Olympia teaches her audience how to “Reprogram Their Brains” to overcome fear, and ultimately achieve success.
For more information on booking rocket scientist Olympia LePoint, check out www.eaglestalent.com or call our office at 1.800.345.5607.
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