ACM-W Connections – October 2017

Welcome from the ACM-W Chair

The Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL was the site of this year;s Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing, which drew nearly 18,000 attendees.  Once again, ACM and ACM-W were active participants in the event.  I want to extend my personal thanks to the many ACM-W volunteers who staffed our Career Fair booth – Bushra Anjum, Laurie Dillon, Lindsay Jamieson, Martha Kosa, Melanie Wu, Priya Chawla, Rachelle Hippler, and Z Sweedyk.   We had the chance to meet many of our ACM-W Student Chapter members and hear about the exciting things their chapters are doing.  We also met many new women from academia and industry who we hope will become involved in ACM-W opportunities in their home regions.  Thanks to all who stopped by to greet us!

Google Supports Scholarships!
Google has once again contributed $50,000 to our ACM-W Scholarships program.  With this donation, Google seeks to encourage undergraduates to go on to graduate school, encourage Master;s students to pursue the PhD, and help early PhD students find a home in their research community.  We extend our heartfelt THANKS to Google for this generous gift!

ACM Celebrations
For the second time this calendar year, the ACM Ukranian Chapter has organized the Ukranian ACM Celebration of Women in Computing.  In conjunction with Hackathon Expert Group, the conference and associated hackathon were held on September 15th at Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv.  Congratulations to this active student chapter on another successful event.

ACM-W Scholarships
This month we hear about the experiences of Rachel Harsley, ,Mozhdeh Ariannezhad, and Li Chang. The Scholarship program continues to have a strong impact on the lives of the recipients.  The next funding deadline is coming up in December.

A final note
October and November will be very busy months for our Celebrations project.  Best wishes for amazing events in Chile, Kansa, Montreal, and Uppsala!  We;ll look forward to your reports in future editions of the newsletter.

Thanks for standing with us as we work to fulfill our mission.

Jodi Tims
ACM-W Chair

News from ACM-W Celebrations

On September 15th, the  Ukrainian ACM Celebration of Women in Computing took place at Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv. This event was jointly organized by the ACM Ukrainian Chapter and Hackathon Expert Group. There were more than 100 participants at the event. The main topic of the celebration was ‘how to increase womens’ involvement in computing;. The event began with an introduction by Taras Panchenko, ACM Ukrainian Chapter Chair, about ACM activities and how we try to make the world better step-by-step. Prominent invited speakers included Bev Bachmayer, ex-Vice Chair of ACM-W Europe, who delivered a keynote speech on women in computing  and discussed internship opportunities. A special keynote was given by Svitlana Marchenko, tutor, on the importance of diversity in education starting from childhood.

An online conference was organized with guest speaker Iryna Berezan who is currently a Software Engineer at Google and formerly worked at Apple. She told the audience about her journey from Taras Shevchenko National University to a career in the biggest software companies. An interesting presentation was given by Nataliia Lytvyniuk, ACM-W National Representative in Ukraine, about events organized by ACM Ukrainian Chapter, the challenges we must overcome, and how to encourage girls in STEM.

The Celebrations continued with a Hackathon  on September 16th which focused on the following topics: womens’ involvement in STEM, Optimization and data science in real estate. Tasks and prizes for ACM Ukraine Hackathon were presented by the sponsors: ACM and Prostodom.UA, Ukrainian real estate web portal. The participants of the Celebration enjoyed a live performance by Ukrainian musician and composer, Mike Kaufman-Portnikov. The event concluded with a Big Birthday Cake with 70 candles and fireworks, commemorating the 70th anniversary of ACM.

Upcoming Celebrations:
ChileWic – Santiago, Chile – October 13, 2017
InWIC – Indianapolis, Indiana – October 27/28th , 2017
CAN-CWIC – Montreal, Quebec – November 3/4th, 2017
MINK WiC – Lenexa Kansas – November 3/4th, 2017
Ada Lovelace Celebration – Uppsala, Sweden – November 17/18th, 2017

If you have questions about ACM Celebrations, please contact Wendy Powley (wendy@cs.queensu.ca).

News from ACM-W Scholarships

The scholarship exposes students to prominent researchers in their field, introduces students to new research, and excites them about doing research by themselves. We ask students to share with us some of their thoughts on the conference they attend, preferably with a picture, so that we can show our readers and funders the diversity of our winners. We never cease to find truly inspiring stories!

When we ask awardees to send us reports and pictures of their academic adventures,
it is always a pleasure to see the companionship and camaraderie, as well as the serious work  that our scholars discover in the meetings they attend. And it;s always hard to decide which reports to highlight for our readers in Connections.

This month we discuss Rachel Harsley (from Chicago), Mozhdeh Ariannezhad (from Tehran) and Li Chang (from Zurich) who went to Seattle (Washington, USA), St. Andrews, (Scotland, UK) and Perth, (Australia), respectively, for their very different conferences.

Rachel, a PhD student on Computer Science education from Chicago, who went to Seattle,  Washington, wrote ;Though two thousand miles away from Chicago, I felt right at home at SIGCSE 2017. I found time with the Computer Science Education community to be both refreshing and enlightening. Moreover, it was such an awesome experience to have my paper selected as an Exemplary Paper; for the conference. She managed to get lunch with the SIGCSE conference co-chair, Tiffany Barnes, along with other colleagues in the sunny west coast.

Mozhdeh,   a Master;s student  from Iran, who looks very cold in her picture in Scotland wrote us;[…] the conference was a great occasion to meet the top researchers and professors of the field of Information Retrieval, who were really friendly, especially to me, as I was one of the youngest participants of the conference. I am looking forward to have collaborations with them in the future.  Mozhdeh remarked  that she presented two papers to a very professional audience who kindly tried to advise me about the future works that I could do.

Li , another Master;s student, who went from Zurich, Switzerland to Perth, Australia says;I found that a conference is a really nice place to receive a lot of new information within the field, in a short time . It is also a nice chance to get inspirations from others; works. […] Besides the experience of attending the conference, I;m really appreciated to get the chance to present my work in front of the others. I learned a lot from how to present the work in a really short time […]”. We hope you all agree that Li looks very professional in front of her  huge slides in the World Wide Conference, despite being her first presentation in public.

The next application deadline is December 15 for conferences taking place in February—March, 2018.
For more information and to apply visit: https://women.acm.org/scholarships/.
If you have any questions, please contact  the scholarship committee chair Prof. Adriana Compagnoni, Adriana.Compagnoni@stevens.edu