Marie Tharp (1920-2006), an Ypsilanti-born cartographer and geologist who discovered the underwater mountains called the Mid Atlantic Ridge in the 1950s and changed modern geology.
Tharp is a key figure in oceanic sciences and geology who prevailed after having her work dismissed as “girl talk” by her peers in the male-dominated 1950’s science community. (Marie Tharp’s 5000 foot long maps were drawn by hand in India ink. She created them, was told that they were impossible, that her calculations must be wrong, and to do them again. Five years later, she came back with the same results.) Today Tharp’s maps are in the Library of Congress. Her maps are used in Google Earth.
FLY seeks to inspire the community with Tharp’s story. As part of our work through the summer, we are bringing hands-on creative projects that relate to Tharp’s work to youth across Washtenaw County. We will work with the ideas of mapping, sonar, the idea that the ocean floor was flat versus what Tharp’s maps revealed, the role of women in science, formation of the continents and more.
At FLY, we believe in the art of making things happen! FLY Children’s Art Center is a non-profit organization in Ypsilanti, Michigan whose mission is to empower children ages 3-14 to imagine, invent, and innovate across disciplines via workshops, camps, and events.
Every child needs this superpower. And, as a community, locally and globally, we depend on creative thinkers who can innovate and solve our greatest challenges. That’s why FLY is dedicated to growing our community’s capacity for critical thinking, risk taking, and problem solving. We do this by providing powerful, hands-on, creative experiences to the children in neighborhoods that need it most across Washtenaw and Wayne counties, especially within Ypsilanti Community Schools, at no cost to the students or their families. FLY aims to create to a community in which kids can bloom and thrive, laying the groundwork for their future greatness.