They’re emphasizing design thinking in education!
Two years ago, Dasia Taylor was a normal 17-year-old senior whose curiosity would propel them into a career in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) field. With dreams of possibly being a surgeon, Dasia was gifted a suture kit for Christmas. After toying with it for some time, Dasia took the first science research opportunity outside of class to see if they could try their hand at making sutures more effective. The results were revolutionary, Dasia developed sutures that change color as the patient’s pH levels change, making it easier to detect infection.
The discovery led Dasia to become a Regeneron Science Talent Scholar, earning the Glenn T. Seaborg Award for STEM research and education, the 2022 Rising Star Award for young women 25 and under who are creating pathways for the next generation, and acknowledgment from Ellen DeGeneres, who honored Dasia for changing the world. Dasia now goes by “Thee Head Nerd,” speaking across the country on panels, at Harvard conferences and other notable institutions about the importance of innovative education strategies in STEM.
“My vision for the future is one where we move away from a rigid, standardized approach to education and prioritize innovation/design-thinking to create an education system that truly serves the needs of all students,” Dasia told Because Of Them We Can.
Their work has been featured on a number of platforms including CNN, The Washington Post, and People magazine. Dasia hopes that they can get others tapped into their vision, and to collaborate with organizations willing to amplify the message across the country. Dasia credits their mother with encouraging them to pursue their dreams. As they reflect back on that childhood curiosity, Dasia said they’re most inspired by other students who remind them of themselves. As they think of the world they’re trying to build, it is those children and their needs that are most on Dasia’s mind.
“I’m inspired by the children I meet on school visits and at community events who are gifted, intelligent, and driven, but who may not fit into the traditional mold of academic success. These kids remind me of myself and my own experiences, and I’m motivated to create educational opportunities that recognize and celebrate their strengths,” said Dasia.
To support Dasia’s work and book them for your organizational needs, contact them at Dasia.Terrionna@gmail.com.
Congratulations Dasia on becoming one of BOTWC’s 2023 Young Frontrunners. Because of you, we can! To view all the amazing 2023 Young Frontrunners, visit botwc.com/youngfrontrunners.
Cover photo: 2023 ‘Young Frontrunner’ honoree Dasia Taylor is advocating for innovation in STEMPhoto Courtesy of Dasia Taylor/BecauseOfThemWeCan