The Michigan Engineer News Center

WAA receives MLK Spirit Award

Congratulations to Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics for receiving the Martin Luther King Spirit Award for exemplifying the leadership and vision of Dr. King through their commitment to social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion! | Short Read
IMAGE:  Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics

Congratulations to Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics, recipients of the 2020 North Campus MLK Spirit Award! The MLK Spirit Awards are given to faculty, staff, students, and student organizations who go above and beyond in exemplifying values of diversity, equity, and inclusion, honoring the work and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King.


Founded in 2016, Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics is dedicated to improving diversity within the department of aerospace engineering, fostering a sense of community among women in fields related to aviation and space, and assisting members in building comprehensive networks and connections within the aerospace industry. 


Their efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion within the field of aerospace sciences and engineering in 2019 included the first annual Dawn Seymour Women in Aerospace Conference. Hosted by WAA, the Conference is part of their ongoing effort to help women and minorities get involved in aerospace and similar fields, providing a setting to network in both a professional and academic setting. Over the course of the conference, WAA put together 6 keynote speakers, four panels, a workshop, and a speed-mentoring dinner, all with the goal of celebrating the achievements of women in aerospace and exposing attendees to a variety of industry leaders. Look forward to the next Women in Aerospace Conference, which will be held in November of 2020.


WAA additionally prides themselves in their work in emphasizing both current issues and past progress in the social and cultural components within Aerospace, with the hope to further facilitate positive change. They are behind the creation of the Women in Aerospace Seminar series and are responsible for numerous outreach efforts such as participating in STEM nights at local high schools. 


President of WAA Catherine Philpott had this to say about receiving the award: “The MLK Spirit Award is an incredible honor to receive. WAA has grown so much over the past year, and this would not have been possible without the hard work, dedication, and determination of the Board and the support of the Aerospace Department and our industry sponsors. I’m looking forward to continuing this positive progress and seeing what WAA accomplishes over the next year!”


Once again, congratulations to the Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics organization for representing the department of Aerospace Engineering and receiving this great honor!

Portrait of Kim Johnson


Kimberly Johnson
Communications Manager

Aerospace Engineering

(734) 647-4701

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