The Pioneers and Trailblazers

Enid May Hawkins

From 1907 to her retirement in 1946, Enid May Hawkins was largely responsible for changing the Library's reputation as a “dingy old den” in Edwin A. Stevens Hall to the “central nervous system for research and study on campus,” according to one profile in The Stute. As Stevens’ first professional librarian, Hawkins grew the Library’s collection from 5,000 books to over 30,000 and oversaw the acquisition of a number of technical reference texts, engineering periodicals, and significant historical collections.

Sheila Banks '78

During her time at Stevens, Sheila was a member of the Society of Women Engineers, served as secretary of the Black Student Union, and played violin and sang in the Glee Club. In 1978, Sheila became the first African-American woman to graduate from Stevens. Shortly after graduating, she accepted a technical market position with Westinghouse Electric Corporation and was later promoted to sales engineer in their New York City offices.

Emmi Fischl

Emmi Hauser Fischl

She could be considered an accidental pioneer. With a tendency simply to do what had to be done — and that included escaping Nazi Germany as a teenager — Emmi Hauser Fischl became the first female faculty member at Stevens in 1947. 

Learn more about Emmi Fischl

Lore E. Feiler

Feiler audited business classes at Stevens during the 1940s and took what she learned from the university to become an industrialist in the jewelry industry. Feiler later expressed her gratitude to the university with a foundation gift that created the Lore-El Center for Women’s Leadership, a unique residence hall for female students and the current hub of women’s programming at Stevens.

Learn more about Lore E. Feiler

Lenore Schupak '74

Lenore Schupak became the first woman to earn an undergraduate degree from Stevens. Lenore was among the first 19 women admitted to the university in 1971 and completed her studies in just three years. 

Learn More About Lenore Schupak

Martha Connolly '75

Being a trailblazer was never a life goal for Martha Connolly ’75. Yet her illustrious career in the biosciences as a researcher, advocate and entrepreneur is one that is characterized by a series of “firsts.” Connolly serves as director of a bioentrepreneurship program in the Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech) at the University of Maryland, helping to launch and create startup companies based on faculty and student research discoveries.

Martha Connolly '75 Paving the Way

Malena Higuera '75

Malena Higuera '75, a member of the first class of women admitted to Stevens when the university became coed in 1971, is the university’s first Latin American woman to graduate.

Voices from Castle Point: Malena Higuera '75
Susan Metz

Susan Metz

Susan Metz is a long time member of the Stevens community serving as Executive Director of Diversity & Inclusion and in 1990 launching WEPAN, a national organization catalyzing change in the academic climate for women in STEM fields. Under her leadership, Stevens and WEPAN were recognized by the White House with the President’s Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring. Susan has substantially contributed to the national STEM diversity policy agenda through participation on several national boards. 

About Susan Metz

Making Their Mark