First Time: A Woman Awarded Math’s Highest Prize
(CNN) — For the first time in history, a woman has received the highest honor in mathematics, often nicknamed the Nobel Prize of mathematics.
Since it was established in 1936, the Fields Medal had gone only to men, until Wednesday, when Maryam Mirzakhani received it in Seoul, South Korea, from the International Mathematical Union.
“This is a great honor. I will be happy if it encourages young female scientists and mathematicians,” Mirzakhani said, according to a statement from Stanford University, where she is a professor.
For those of us less versed in the uppermost echelons of mathematics and geometry than Mirzakhani, it’s mind-twisting to understand the abstract accomplishments that got her field’s highest recognition.