Who am I?
Elizabeth Helen MacLeod Georgeson was likely the first female engineering graduate from any Scottish university. She started studying engineering at the University of Edinburgh in 1916. Interestingly, she was 21 when she started her studies - that is at the age of majority when she could make her own decisions about her future. It may also be significant that she did this at the height of World War I - when women of all social classes were taking on new roles, often in engineering fields previously barred to them. Although she published research papers under her birth name, there are no entires for her in any official records under that name, even in the national identity records of 1939 - so perhaps she went by another name, or even married. © Nina Baker
I am monumental because...
Elizabeth graduated with a BSc in Engineering in 1919 and also gained a First Class Certificate of Merit in Mechanical Engineering and Second Class Certificates in Junior Engineering Labs and Engineering Fieldwork. She is likely to have worked for the Safety in Mines Research Laboratory in Sheffield as she co-authored papers which acknowledge that the research was done there between 1926 and 1942 - although her first publication was in 1925, on the properties of cement particles. She also wrote poetry and her Flotsam, a contemplation on old age, was published in 1952 in a selection of short poems from the Festival of Britain. © Nina Baker
Georgeson (far right, second row) at the Edinburgh Mathematical Colloquium in St Andrews in 1934. Image courtesy of the University of St Andrews MacTutor History of Mathematics