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Elizabeth Blackwell’s 197th Birthday

By Sarah Rinne, Reporter

On February 3, 2018 it was Elizabeth Blackwell’s 197th birthday. If you went to search something up on Google that day, you may have noticed her featured in the animated Google icon. Elizabeth Blackwell is an inspiring woman who I feel isn’t talked about enough. In 1849, Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman to earn an M.D. degree in America.

Growing up, being a doctor did not interest Elizabeth. It wasn’t until one of her closest friends was dying that she considered going into the medical field. Blackwell’s friend told her that if her doctor had been a woman, she could have been spared from her worst suffering. Blackwell then knew that she wanted to become a doctor. The problem was, at the time, women were not accepted into medical schools. For a long time, Blackwell was rejected from every college she applied to. When she finally got accepted into Geneva College, she was discriminated against and looked down upon for being a woman pursuing a medical career. She was often forced to sit separated from the rest of her class and was excluded from many labs. Blackwell continued to work hard and ended up graduating first in her class.

Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell struggled finding a place to work and had very few patients at the beginning of her career because many failed to look past her gender. Eventually, Blackwell opened up a medical college for girls. She worked very hard for her whole life to be seen as an equal in the medical field. Elizabeth Blackwell can be seen as an inspiration for forever changing the way that people look at hard-working women in a workplace.

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Elizabeth Blackwell’s 197th Birthday