On March 26, 2018, Rutgers University-Newark (RU-N) will celebrate the accomplishments of the “hidden figures” among us. Hidden figures are women who study, work, educate, serve, and lead in their schools, neighborhoods, businesses, and organizations, who are deeply committed to promoting diversity, inclusion, social justice, and community wellbeing, and whose contributions and achievements have impacted the lives of many in the City of Newark and beyond – but who largely remain unrecognized.

This year’s guests of honor include NASA aerospace engineer Dr. Aprille Joy Ericsson and Jet Express Airlines First Officer Carole Hopson as the 2018 SHEROES. Ericsson was the first woman to receive a doctoral degree in mechanical engineering from Howard University and the first African-American woman to receive a doctoral degree in engineering at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Her many honors include the National Technical Association’s Top 50 Minority Women in Science and Engineering Award; NASA representative to the White House; and the prestigious Washington Award.

Carole Hopson, First Officer for ExpressJet Airlines, is also being honored. She currently serves as Vice Chairwoman on the Board of Directors of the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals. Aviation had always been Carole’s passion, so she pursued flying, working as a flight instructor, while raising her family. Previously, she has held executive-level positions at Foot Locker, USA, National Football League and L’Oreal Cosmetics.

In addition to our guests of honor, 10 Unsung SHEROES from RU-N and the city of Newark, selected by faculty and administrators, will be announced and honored with a special citation and a pin from Glass Roots in Newark. These amazing women work, serve or volunteer at RU-N or in the Greater Newark community; have made a meaningful and/or significant impact in areas such as education, inclusion, access, and social justice; and they have not received any previous awards or recognition.