NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Bahamian-American aerospace engineer and entrepreneur Aisha Bowe will address more than 600 members of the Spring 2021 Commencement Class of University of The Bahamas (UB) during the university’s virtual commencement ceremony scheduled for May 27, 2021.
An enthusiastic advocate of increasing underrepresented communities in the Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) field, Bowe is the chief executive officer of STEMBoard, a technology solutions company that creates smart systems and solutions for large-scale government and private-sector clients. She once served as an aerospace engineer at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the United States.
The Spring 2021 Commencement Class is UB’s second cohort of graduands completing their academic requirements since the COVID-19 pandemic, a lingering national and international crisis. Bowe will speak on the theme “Unleashing Our Creativity: The Key to a Sustainable Future” and will impart advice and lessons to help guide graduating seniors as they embark on a new path in an era of grave uncertainty, turmoil and opportunity.
Born in the United States to a working-class family whose patriarch was born and raised in The Bahamas, Bowe was driven by a desire to achieve her dreams in spite of other people’s doubts and the challenges of navigating environments where few people looked like her. Her mantra, “you belong in any room you choose to enter”, reflects the realization she gained from her academic and professional experiences, that belief and persistence are integral ingredients for achieving one’s goals.
Bowe earned both a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering (B.S.E) and a Masters in Space Systems Engineering (M. Eng.) from the University of Michigan before beginning a high-profile, prestigious and transformative career at NASA. She joined NASA’s Ames Research Center, which is well known for its world-class research in air traffic management, conducted in collaboration with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to make air travel safer, less expensive and more efficient for the flying public.
While at Ames, she worked as a Mission Engineer on Nanosatellite programs before serving as a published researcher in the Flight Trajectory Dynamics & Controls Branch of the Aviation Systems Division. Her work focused on developing methods to maintain safe separation of air traffic and optimize fuel consumption within automated systems. Six years after serving at NASA and determined to help inspire and make space for other minorities in technology, she founded STEMBoard, an engineering solutions company. A primary mandate of her organization is to “democratize technology” by inspiring those from under-represented communities to pursue STEM careers. In 2020, STEMBoard ranked in the top half of Inc. Magazine’s 5,000 list of fastest growing companies in America.
A thought leader, visionary and philanthropist, Bowe has worked over the years to raise the profile of STEM and encourage Bahamians to aspire towards these careers. She also created the Hack<IT> STEM camp in The Bahamas with a focus on introducing hundreds of Bahamian youth to these career options.
More recently, in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, STEMBoard launched LINGO, a self-paced, at-home coding kit, to help support educators and students in the new remote and hybrid educational structures imposed by distance learning. Today, LINGO is used by students worldwide and is the chosen academic support tool of various private and public schools across the United States, non-profit institutions, as well as programs sponsored by tech giants including Microsoft and General Electric.
Bowe is a member of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). She has received numerous awards to her credit, including: the 2020 Outstanding Alumna Award — University of Michigan Engineering; the 40 Under 40: Tech Diversity in Silicon Valley; US Women’s Chamber of Commerce Emerging Star Award; and NASA’s Engineering Honor Award.
In addition to the virtual commencement ceremony for New Providence on May 27, UB’s Spring 2021 Commencement events include the traditional Baccalaureate Service and Teachers Commissioning Ceremony (May 25); School of Nursing and Allied Health Professions Ceremony and Awards Ceremony (May 26) and the University of The Bahamas-North Commencement Ceremony (June 3). The events will be live streamed and held via a virtual meeting platform.
All information is available at www.ub.edu.bs.