ACM-W Connections – September, 2014

Welcome from the ACM-W Chair

Welcome to the September issue of ACM-W Connections. Before I say anything about this issue, I want to thank all of you for reading. I’ve received quite a number of positive comments about ACM-W Connections, and I appreciate any input and feedback you have.

As you know (since we only put out one summer issue), ACM-W volunteers took time during the summer to recharge, work on research projects, and focus on their jobs (in some cases that included moving cross-country). Though we get various types of support from ACM Headquarters, I continue to be amazed by and grateful for the incredible effort put forward by our ever growing team of volunteers – for this newsletter, and for all of our other projects that you read about here.

In this issue we have a look at the coming year of ACM-W Celebrations of Women in Computing, as well as a note from our Chapters chair. Meanwhile, I know that I promised information about new activities ACM-W will be working on during 2014-2015, the result of a wonderful Executive Meeting we had in May. There are two main areas of focus. First, we would like to foster the development of ACM-W Professional Chapters. We think it would be particularly fruitful to do this in areas that have both thriving computing companies and university programs. This will allow for joint activities between practitioners, faculty, and students which could benefit all parties. Please contact me if you would be interested in working on a chapter in your area. Second, we are going to use some technology ourselves in order to better match the needs we have for volunteers with the interests of those who would like to participate in ACM-W. Keep an eye out in the coming months for more information about this. Finally, we will be improving analysis of our own programs, primarily addressing impact of the Celebrations events, but also taking a look at the impact of other programs as well.

Thanks, as always, for supporting ACM-W and women in computing.

~Valerie Barr, ACM-W Chair

News From ACM-W Chapters

I just saw Reyyan Ayfer in New York City at ACM Headquarters. Seeing her makes me remember that I have a sister half-way around the world. Reyyan and I both sponsor ACM-W Chapters. Increasingly, ACM-W reaches an international audience. Reyyan’s Turkey now has three chapters; her own chapter was founded in 2006, and two more chapters were recently chartered. ACM-W Chapters emphasize women’s common goals and common interests, no matter what their worldwide locations may be. View some of Reyyan’s chapter’s activities ( “take a tip from Turkey.”

~Gloria Townsend, chair of the ACM-W Chapters Committee

ACM-W Celebrations Heads Into a New Year

The 2014-2015 academic year promises to be another exciting one for the Celebrations Project. This fall will see conferences in Goa, India (September 25-26), Ontario, Canada (October 24-25), and the Rocky Mountain region (October 23-25). During the spring semester, there will be 10 additional celebrations including anticipated first-time events in Abu Dhabi and Cuba.

Information on starting new Celebrations and resources that can aide in conference planning can be found on our web site (/celebrations). Please contact me for any additional assistance ( and I’ll be happy to help.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to publicly thank all of the women on the Celebrations committee who help support the project:

Laura Dillon – Michigan State University

Rachelle Hippler – Bowling Green State University, Firelands Campus

Martha Kosa – Tennessee Technological University

Wendy Powley – Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario

The hard work and dedication of this group of volunteers is invaluable! Each month’s ACM-W Connections will include a report from a recent Celebration, so be sure to read those and see the amazing impact that this project is having on the students, faculty, and industry attendees at these events. We are once again grateful to Microsoft Research for their continued support of the Celebrations project, providing funding for each of the 2014-2015 events. Raytheon Corp. has also provided support for several of the upcoming events. This corporate support helps make it possible for us to celebrate women in computing all over the world.

~Jodi Tims, Celebrations Project Chair


  • The 3rd Annual International Women’s Hackathon at Grace Hopper and Around the World on Oct. 11, 2014. The International Women’s Hackathon is a network of concurrent events that are designed to empower young women leaders in computer science. By providing a fun and safe environment in which to explore computing, the hackathon encourages and supports university women around the world to become producers of future innovations in technology and help solve challenges in the world today. Sign-up today to participate at Grace Hopper or organize an event on your college or university Campus.

    Learn more at:

    Register at:

  • Microsoft Research is accepting applications for the 2015 Microsoft Research Graduate Women’s Scholarship Program. Applicants must be full-time, female students, enrolled in their first year of a graduate program with an accredited university, with a research focus in Computer Science, Information Science, Mathematics, or Electrical Engineering. The deadline for submission of applications is Friday, October 17, 2014, at 11:59 P.M., Pacific Time.

    For qualifications and application procedures, please see:

  • Would you like to contribute an article to the ACM-W Newsletter? With a distribution list reaching thousands of ACM-W members, contributing to the newsletter is a wonderful opportunity to share ideas and information across a wide audience. Submit a proposal for an article /submit.