Department of Computer Science: Grace Hopper Celebration of Women
“The Department of Computer Science is making a strong effort toward addressing the diversity problem in the tech industry. Supporting the attendance of students at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing is an important part of our agenda. Successful fundraising through weR Gold would help us significantly expand the number of students who can participate in the conference, and take home the confidence, skills, and professional connections that the Grace Hopper experience provides.” - Chuck Stewart, Professor and Department Head, Computer Science
Students who attend the Grace Hopper Conference begin to build professional networks, attend seminars that enhance their confidence as women in the tech field, and secure prized internships and permanent job offers. Through these connections made and the knowledge gained at GHC, our female students build the confidence and inner strength to become leaders in the tech industry.
Rensselaer women who attend Grace Hopper take many amazing things away from the conference. Students who attend GHC come home with internship and job offers at top companies. A current CS graduate student who attended in 2018 accepted a full-time offer from Google after interviewing with company representatives at the Grace Hopper career expo. Similarly, one of our CS alumna who attended in her senior year obtained her current full-time job at Blue Apron after interviewing with the company at GHC. Further, many students use GHC as an opportunity to expand their knowledge in specific domains of computer science. This gives them a competitive edge when searching for internships, research positions, and jobs.
At the 2018 conference, students attended a variety of tech talks on topics, such as using big data for social good, and accessibility of design for all users. Several students said that these seminars opened their eyes to the wide range of concentration areas in CS. One of our students said, “[I learned that] you can pursue literally any interest with computer science!”
The most amazing part of GHC is the empowerment and sense of belonging that women experience at the conference. One of the 2018 attendees commented that because of her experience at Grace Hopper, she wants to always ensure that safe spaces exist for women and underrepresented minorities in the computing industry. Another student shared that she has a reignited enthusiasm to help girls in elementary school expand their horizons by learning programming early in their education. This student currently mentors for the Lift Off Diversity Incubator, and she was excited to bring what she learned at GHC back to her mentees. Several women who attended GHC planned a presentation on data visualization and data security, which they recently presented at an event called XTECH, a one-day workshop for 6th-12th graders to enhance their interest in STEM. The presenters incorporated concepts that they learned at GHC, and they were excited to share their knowledge with the younger generation of students in tech.
What You're Supporting
If we are able to send more students to Grace Hopper, we are taking concrete steps toward narrowing the gender gap on campus and in the broader STEM field. Women who attend GHC return to campus with a renewed enthusiasm for their studies and their future in the tech industry, and they are excited to empower other women at Rensselaer.
Many of the students who attend GHC are involved in student clubs on campus such as the Association of Computing Machinery Women’s Chapter, the Society of Women Engineers, the Rensselaer Center for Open Source, and coding&&community. These clubs greatly benefit from the energy that these women bring home from GHC, and their commitment to uplifting other women and underrepresented minorities in the tech world.
Your donation will help cover the costs of registration, airfare, hotel accommodations, and ground transportation for students selected to attend the Grace Hopper Conference.
Who We Are
Both the Department of Computer Science and RPI’s chapter of the Association of Computing Machinery Women’s Chapter (ACM-W) would be extremely grateful for your support. ACM-W is a student-run organization that celebrates, informs and supports women in computing. The Rensselaer chapter strives to recruit, engage and rejoice in the accomplishments of female computer scientists within the university. By providing a variety of workshops, networking events, and career advancement opportunities, the chapter strives to create equal opportunity and diversification in CS-related fields.
Several ACM-W members attended GHC in 2018, and they have been working actively to bring what they learned back to the Rensselaer community. Your donation, in any amount, will help more women have experiences similar to those described on this page. The ripple effect of excitement and empowerment that comes from Grace Hopper is palpable and inspiring for our students. By sending more women to the Grace Hopper Celebration, Rensselaer is helping the tech world become a more welcoming place for women.
For more information on ACM-W, head to our website!
For more information on the Department of Computer Science, head to our website!