The recent Fox movie hit, “Hidden Figures”, proves once again math indeed can solve the problems of the world. Lead by a cast including Taraji Henson, Octivia Spencer, Kevin Costner, Janelle Monae and other award winners, this movie is packing in audiences of all ages, races, genders and other diverse characteristics showing how math crosses many divides and can be a tool that brings everyone together.
The movie starts out with a colored elementary age school girl doing math at the blackboard in West Virginia. Needless to say, I loved the movie. The IBM character an IBM 7090 also plays a key supporting role. This movie is based on the true story of Dorothy Vaughan, Katherine Johnson, and Mary Jackson as human “computers” who helped and were supported by John Glenn in NASA’s space race. These women endured challenges in that past that haven reduced, some unfortunately still exist today and we can follow their lead on how anyone might address a variety of challenges in the future.
Using education as the tool to advance is one great lessons to take away from this movie. Taking advantage of the IBM Academic Initiative and the IBM Skills Academy are resources available to faculty and students who learn from the past, want to invest in education today and make a place for ourselves and others in the future. At IBM skills are the cornerstone of how to stay relevant as demonstrated in this movie and in life: http://adsoftheworld.com/media/film/ibm_stem_diversity_at_ibm
The below picture is of three books from my personal library. The first book is my college Fortran book. The second is Hidden Figures and the third book is my 2016 Programming 7 in 1 book. If you watch the movie (or read the book) you will enjoy a range of emotions. There may be a point in the movie when you remember this picture and may encourage you to learn something new and/or be part of someone else learning something new. When that happens, consider starting here: http://onthehub.com/ibm/
Three related books in the Kennedy library:
Twitter: @vscarbro and @ibmskills
IBM Academic Initiative: http://onthehub.com/ibm/