Today, the world lost a great woman to cancer. Maryam Mirzakhani was a Stanford professor who became the only woman to receive the highest honor in mathematics.

Mirzakhani thrived in the study of curved surfaces to the extent that other people in the same field dared not explore. Her work could help advance understanding in physics, quantum mathematics, and other areas outside of math as well.

In 2014, Mirkzakhani became the first woman to receive the Fields Medal, the highest honor in mathematics and is equivalent to receiving a Nobel Prize. She stated that the award was an incredible honor, but she would be the most happiest if “it encourages young female scientists and mathematicians.”

Maryam Mirzakhani was an amazing woman who not only contributed to a myriad of mathematical advancements, but also defied gender standards and should be seen as a template for women and girls throughout their careers. Rest in peace Maryam.

“Maryam is gone far too soon, but her impact will live on for the thousands of women she inspired to pursue math and science,” Stanford University President Marc Tessier-Lavigne said.

Maryam Mirzakhani, Only Woman to Take Math’s Highest Award, Dies at 40

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