“Women make up half of the world, and technology which is pervasive for all of the world is incomplete without the input and immersed involvement of women.”
Those words from Dr. Nazli Hardy, associate professor of computer science at Millersville University, began the awards ceremony for high school students at the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) regional event. At the ceremony, Millersville University and NCWIT announced the 2021 Central PA Aspirations in Computing Award Winners.
Millersville received a $2,500 grant from NCWIT to start a regional affiliate and to host the awards event. Leading up to this year’s event, Hardy has been working with NCWIT for the past two years.
The NCWIT award recognizes young women at the high-school level for their computing-related achievements and interests. The regional winners announced at the event are now in the running for national awards. The keynote speaker was Turkey Hills Chief Information Officer Julie Rafferty.
The new regional affiliate is led by Hardy and Dana Wile from the Lancaster County School Counselors Association. Hardy says they want to inspire young women into technology beyond this once-a-year award. “We hope to create a network of support and opportunities locally for young women in the region,” said Hardy.
In addition, Millersville alum Kelsey Kman is involved. She serves as the Program Coordinator for NCWIT Counselors for Computing. Kman has her master’s in counseling from Millersville University.
The formation of an advisory board is underway and will include K-12 educators, institutions of higher education, STEM ecosystems and the business community in Central Pennsylvania. Applications for 2022 are open from September 1, 2021 – October 15, 2021. Interested people should contact Dana Wile at firstname.lastname@example.org
NCWIT is a non-profit community of more than 1,100 universities, companies, non-profits, and government organizations nationwide working to increase women’s participation in computing and technology. NCWIT equips change leaders with resources for taking action in recruiting, retaining, and advancing women from K–12 and higher education through industry and entrepreneurial careers. Find out more at www.ncwit.org.
You can watch a recording of the awards ceremony here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZRkuKBeK_s