Maggie Aderin-Pocock in the Dark Matter Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show, 2015

1968 –

As a young girl, Maggie Aderin-Pocock was obsessed with space and loved looking up at the night sky. Despite the fact that her family didn’t have much money and that she had dyslexia, her obsession led her to enrol in a telescope-making class in north London.

Maggie’s passion led to a career where she has worked on some of the biggest space projects, including NASA’s recently launched James Webb telescope.

In 2009 she was awarded an MBE for her work as a science communicator, breaking down complex scientific issues into simple information that everyone can understand, and for her outreach to young people.

Another amazing woman whose curiosity led to incredible discoveries was Marie Curie. Her story is available on the site. Marie Curie’s curiosity led her to attend secret schools because girls weren’t allowed to study past a certain stage in Poland at that time. It eventually took her to France, where she discovered radium and polonium. Her work helped in the invention of x-ray machines and in the treatment of cancer.

Are you able to stay curious even when you encounter hurdles?

Maggie Aderin-Pocock also features in this year’s Amazing Black Britons. This resource is great for exploring different amazing people and thinking about how character strengths can be developed alongside.

Photo: Science and Technology Facilities Council, CC BY-SA 2.0