Wednesday, December 14, 2011

CIS Student Awarded NCWIT Student Seed Fund

The National Conference on Women in Information Technology (NCWIT) has selected Florida A&M University’s (FAMU) African-American Women in Computer Science (AAWCS) Scholarship Program to receive the Return Path Student Seed Fund Grant.

The grant, valued at $500, has been awarded to Olivia Wilson, a junior computer and information sciences student from Tallahassee, Fla.

“I am happy and honored to get this fund,” she said. “With it, I can do more to help recruit for not only our department, but for this field as well.

The grant is to be applied toward activities designed to recruit and attract women to the field of computing.  The award will also be announced at the next national NCWIT event.

With this funding, Wilson plans to develop and implement several initiatives to recruit women to the field, including a Showcase of Women in Information Technology Luncheon, that will feature women in computer science and information technology speaking to high school and college women.  In addition, prizes and mini-scholarships will be offered.
“Coming into the technology field, I noticed that there is a shortage of women here—especially minority women,” said Wilson. “With the grant, I plan to do something that draws high school students, specifically women, to the field and show them that they can be successful as well.”

Jason Black, AAWCS principal investigator and Wilson’s adviser, said he is proud of Wilson and her accomplishment.

“This is an exciting offer,” said Black.  “We are already dedicated to this goal and this funding will definitely aid in our efforts to increase these numbers.” 

Wilson works with the Students and Technology in Academia, Research and Services Program, where she uses the information she gathers from her programs for research to assist in recruiting women to the technology field.


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