Friday marked what would have been the 100th birthday of the late Mary Jackson, the first African American female engineer at NASA. Students in Salt Lake City who attend Mary W. Jackson Elementary marked the occasion by launching rockets.
Mary W. Jackson Elementary is the oldest elementary school in the city. It was originally named for former President Andrew Jackson, infamous for removing the Cherokee people from their land despite the objections of the Supreme Court, but was renamed in 2018.
Children celebrated the legacy of Mary Jackson, whose story was part of the book and movie “Hidden Figures,” by attending special science classes including the mechanics of rocket building. Older students were allowed to set off rockets on Friday afternoon.