Paying alone with her four kids (Souder). Her

Paying her way to college, Rachel
Carson not only graduated with a masters in zoology and became the second woman
hired by the US Bureau of Fisheries, but she also wrote many books which
greatly impacted the United States. Born into an impoverished family, Rachel
Carson overcame many obstacles while in college, and became one of the 100 most
influential people of the 1900s.

            Rachel
Carson, born on May 27, 1907, found her love for nature and animals at an early
age while exploring her family’s 64-acre farm in Springdale, Pennsylvania
(Michal; Souder). She always loved exploring the woods by her house with her
dog, Candy, and noticed all the bugs and different types of trees with her eye
for detail (Hustard) Because Rachel’s dad, Robert Carson, was an insurance
salesman, he often left home to travel leaving Maria, Rachel’s mom, alone with
her four kids (Souder). Her family had a very low income causing them to have
no electricity or plumbing (Souder). While she was a child, she loved reading
and writing and became a published author by ten years old (Michal). Throughout
high school, Carson had to work at a laboratory in Massachusetts and at Woods
Hole Oceanographic Institution to help fund college (Hustard, Powel).

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            In
1925, she began attending the Pennsylvania College for Woman studying English
but later changed to study biology (Michal, Powel). Graduating in 1929 with
high honors, she received her bachelor’s degree in biology (Powel, Gilbert,
Michal). Longing to learn more, Rachel began studying at the oceanographic
institute of John Hopkins University, where she received her master’s in
zoology in 1932 (Michal). Although Rachel wanted to pursue a doctorate degree,
she had to take care of her mother and two orphaned nieces and continued to
struggle financially (Michal, Gilbert).

            After
searching for a long time, she finally found a job teaching zoology at the
University of Maryland (Powel). Leaving her teaching career, she scored higher
than all other applicants and became the second woman hired by the US Bureau of
Fisheries in 1936 (Michal). Carson began as a marine biologist until 1937 when
she became a junior aquatic biologist (Michal, Hustard). After the promotion to
editor-in-chief, Carson left this organization in 1952 to pursue her writing
career (Powel). Although Carson faced much rejection, she published her first
book, Under the Sea Wind, in 1941
which explained the animal life on the East Coast (Powel). Soon after the
publication, Japan attacked Pearl Harbor taking away from the focus on her book
so she only received some admiration for presenting scientific facts in an
understandable way (Hustard). Because Carson longed for people to understand
the wonders of the ocean, she wrote and published a second book, The Sea Around Us, in 1951 which
eventually was turned into a movie as well (Powel). This book sparked wonder in
the mind of all who read it, causing it to become the best-seller for 86 weeks
and allowed her to quit her job (Gilbert, Hustard). A letter from one of
Carson’s friends in 1958 opened Carson’s eyes to the effects of spraying
pesticides on plants (Powel). Her friend studied the forest and noticed many of
the wildlife and birds were dying, and after many tests, it became evident that
the cause was the pesticides (Powel). Carson decided she needed to do something
about the problem, so she began to write another book and before the book was
even published, 4,000 copies had already been sold (Hustard). In 1958, Carson
spoke to editors about publishing a story in the newspaper before writing a
book (Powel). The deadline on that article was pushed back for Carson to have
more time for research (Powel).