The co-creator of the Pfizer-AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine is set to be part of the Barbie dolls for her achievement that has saved millions around the world from the deadly coronavirus.
Professor Sarah Gilbert led the development of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine at Oxford University. She had earlier been thanked for her efforts at the Wimbledon in form of a standing ovation, she has been made a dame and now, she has a Barbie doll made in her honour.
Gilbert, however, says she found this gesture to be "very strange" but she hopes it will encourage young people to take up jobs in the field of Science, technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
"I am passionate about inspiring the next generation of girls into Stem careers and hope that children who see my Barbie will realise how vital careers in science are to help the world around us," Gilbert said. "My wish is that my doll will show children careers they may not be aware of, like a vaccinologist."
In addition to Gilbert, Mattel, the company that owns Barbie dolls, has also designed a few more models in honour of some other women who have made their name in STEM all around the world. These women are Amy O’Sullivan and Dr Audrey Cruz, US healthcare workers; Chika Stacy Oriuwa, a Canadian doctor; Dr Kirby White, an Australian healthcare worker who co-created a reusable gown for medical workers and Dr Jaqueline Goes de Jesus, a biomedical researcher.
"Barbie recognises that all frontline workers have made tremendous sacrifices when confronting the pandemic and the challenges it heightened. To shine a light on their efforts, we are sharing their stories … to inspire the next generation to take after these heroes and give back," said Lisa McKnight, senior vice-president and global head of Barbie and dolls at Mattel.