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«Gloria Childress Townsend Professor of Computer Science Stephanie Ball Laura Kuh Computer Science Majors DePauw University SIGCSE Original 2005 ...»

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In a sense, InWic can be viewed as a mini Grace Hopper, executed on a small, regional scale. During the 2012 conference, almost one hundred fifty participants from Indiana universities, in addition to some guests from other states, spent nearly twenty-four hours exploring their similarities and differences as women in computing. The conference brought together computer science students and faculty members from schools such as Indiana University, DePauw University, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, Purdue University, and IndianaPurdue at Indianapolis University, along with industry leaders and research scientists for a regional gathering at a rustic inn in a scenic state park. For more information: http://www.cs.indiana.edu/inwic/ To launch your own regional celebration

Workshops 57. Imagine Cup Academic

Description: Host a workshop, where students form small groups to explore participation in Microsoft's Imagine Cup. The workshop leader displays the Imagine Cup webpage ( ///), developing a checklist, so that groups understand all requirements. Afterwards, groups brainstorm ideas for projects and share ideas at the conclusion of the workshop. Ideally, students who have participated in Imagine Cup in prior years share their experiences.

Benefits: Imagine Cup is an ideal complement to programming contests.

Group Size: Large

58. Graduate School Applications Academic & Professional Description: Faculty members, professionals, or graduate students give tips and advice to undergraduates who are filling out applications for graduate, professional school, assistantships, fellowships; writing personal statements and interviewing.

Benefits: This workshop provides students with a head start in filling out applications, a peer support group and practical guidance for success.

Group Size: Small

59. Using LinkedIn Effectively Academic & Professional Description: An upper-class student or two can lead this workshop, displaying LinkedIn pages on a large-screen display. Attending students bring laptops. Leaders progress through the partitions of a LinkedIn page, explaining how students can effectively portray past experiences to attract attention of potential employers.

Benefits: With the proliferation of LinkedIn use, the workshop is enormously popular. The event helps computing majors, and at the authors' school drew majors' friends, serving as a good-will event and a recruiting opportunity.

Group Size: Large

60. Mother/Daughter Service Description: Invite mother and daughter teams from the "faculty and staff" pool or the local community to explore the world of computers together, during a short workshop.

Benefits: Older women are often apprehensive about using computers – they are sometimes afraid that they will break a computer or so lacking in confidence that they have avoided computers completely. Inviting mother and daughter pairs may help ease fears and ease them into the technological world, through the bonding experience with their daughters.

Group Size: Large number of mother/daughter teams

61. Resume Building Professional Description: Bring in one or more professionals to give tips to students about resume features that attract favorable attention from recruiters. Students bring resumes to the workshop that is held in a laboratory. After the general advice from the experts, students use the advice to rewrite portions of their resumes, while professionals circulate giving suggestions.

Benefits: Students build persuasive resumes. Hints and tips from a professional give students confidence and enhance their chances of being hired.

Group Size: Small

62. Robots Academic & Social Description: Gather a group of students to experiment with Lego Mindstorm® or other inexpensive robots.

Benefits: Experimenting with robots introduces students to the computer science sub-field of robotics. The experience demonstrates a real world application of computer science, which can be very attractive to women. Programming the robots in small teams creates more natural circumstances for younger women who are joining the major to interact with and get acquainted with older majors.

Group Size: Small

63. Sexual Harassment Academic Description: Gather a group of women to attend a session to discuss sexual harassment.

Discussion topics should include how to recognize/define harassment and how to respond when the problem arises. Role-playing works well as a component of the event.

Benefits: Sexual harassment can be a problem in a field like computer science, where women are usually underrepresented. The workshop will give women more self-reliance should they encounter sexual harassment.

Group Size: Large

–  –  –

Description: Hold periodic workshops for people in the community. Students can help citizens with any computer problems they may be having, or simply teach them to set up and use an email account. Additionally, students may help the unemployed or under-employed construct resumes and learn basic technology skills. The Ohio State University's TWICE group (http://twice.cse.ohio-state.edu/) also helps teach a computer club for girls at a lowincome elementary school and provides technical support for low-income neighborhood resource centers.

An organization might also want to partner with a local freegeek chapter (http://www.freegeek.org/) to collect, repair and redistribute old PCs.





Benefits: Community workshops build positive connections between community members and university students. Additionally, students gain teaching experience and confidence in their computing skills.

Group Size: Large Community Technology Enhancement Program (CTEP) CTEP is a DePauw University sponsored community outreach program that uses its resources to provide Internet 101 workshops for the members of the Putnam County community. These workshops have covered such areas as word processing, e-mail, web surfing, and other computer basics. More importantly CTEP collects used but usable PCs and Macintoshes, refurbishes them, and distributes them to members of the community who would not otherwise have access to a computer. For more information, visit the CTEP website at http://www.depauw.edu/univ/ctep/what_is_ctep.htm.

65. Job Hunts Professional Description: Assemble a group of students to attend a job fair in the nearest big city.

Benefits: Job hunting as a group prevents procrastination, and may serve as a support system for individuals.

Group Size: Large

66. Mock Interviews Professional Description: Have professors or professionals from area businesses volunteer to participate in mock interviews for students contemplating graduate school or entering the work world.

Benefits: Practicing interviews with professors gives students an opportunity to freshen their interview skills in a less threatening environment. Practicing with professionals gives a more real world experience, and possibly creates networking relationships.

Group Size: Small

67. Lectures Professional Description: Invite a female speaker from a computing-related business or nearby research

school to speak to students. ACM has a speaker board:

http://www.acm.org/top/lect.html Benefits: Lectures give students information about different career paths and research areas that involve more than programming. The speakers also offer students a chance to ask questions or advice and view new role models.

Group Size: Large

68. Panel Discussions and Roundtables Professional Description: Invite three or four people from the technological workforce to speak with students about their careers and lives outside work. (One or two speakers may be preferred, because it is important to provide ample time for audience participation.) Benefits: The discussion time is more informal, maximizing personalized and meaningful conversations that may be more valuable than formal lectures for many women.

Group Size: Large Databases

69. Interview Questions Professional & Academic Description: Construct a database of interview questions and add to the database as each year’s group of seniors interviews. The database may also include general tips and advice for interviews.

Benefits: Students understand what to expect from future interviews so that they are not blindsided by interviewing situations. Adding a session where students practice mock interviews with the database questions and participate in a group discussion of the mock interview results enhances student preparation and builds confidence.

–  –  –

70. Scholarships and Grants Academic Description: Build a database of scholarship opportunities for women in computing. Encourage women to provide the names and contact information for scholarships they have applied for or received.

Benefits: Searching for scholarships can be a very time consuming and erratic activity. Students can synergistically share information, so that the current group and future groups of women in computing profit.

Group Size: Large

71. Internships Academic & Professional Description: Have students submit reviews of their internships -- location, specifics of the job, feedback, etc. -- or keep on record places that are accepting students for internships.

Benefits: Internships are an important step in one’s career, and sharing resources benefits the women-in-computing group.

Group Size: Large

72. Research Opportunities Academic & Professional Description: Compose a database, which contains information about different research opportunities available to undergraduates.

Benefits: Many students fail to realize that there are research opportunities available to undergraduate students. Using a luncheon event to advertise the database by having advanced students talk about research experiences (both academic and social) will encourage younger students to apply to several summer programs. If the experienced students have produced posters or journal articles, display the poster or distribute copies of the papers.

–  –  –

Storing information in a database is organized and efficient. Students can query the database at any time to quickly find information. Students are also more likely to take advantage of such a convenient resource.

73. High School Computer Science Demonstrations Service Description: Ask student volunteers to travel to local high schools to give computer science demonstrations for the younger students. Suggestions for presentations include robotics, basic game programming with graphics, and website design. Talk with principals and college administration to determine if high school students can audit or enroll in undergraduate CS1 classes. If both parties agree, advertise CS1.

Benefits: Science demos give younger students a look at the entertaining side of computer science. The earlier girls are exposed to the field and its role models, the more likely they will be to take a course, when they enter college.

–  –  –

One of four New Orleans high school teams that attended the regional FIRST competition in Atlanta, GA

For more information regarding Idea #73:

Tony Lopez Xavier University tlopez@xula.edu "In Fall 2004, faculty members from the Department of Computer Sciences and Computer Engineering at Xavier University of Louisiana became mentors to students in New Orleans Public Schools who were participating in the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics challenge. FIRST Robotics is a national effort (See www.usfirst.org). The faculty members involved: Drs. Marguerite Giguette, Ray Lang, Jeff Matocha, Andrea Edwards, and Dongyan Chen.

Cost: The New Orleans Public School (NOPS) system bore the cost of the FIRST Robotics project for the students and faculty from the four high schools that were involved.

The Xavier faculty contributed their free, after-work time (10 or more hours per week each for about eight weeks) and Xavier hosted the awards presentation for the high school students at the end of the competition.

74. Girl Scout Badges Service Description: Help girls in a local Girl Scout troop earn their technology badges. Requirements for such badges include making word documents, doing artwork on the computer, and constructing a website.

Benefits: Helping young girls earn their Girl Scout badges gives them positive role models to remember, when negative computing stereotypes appear.

–  –  –

75. Grade School Visits Service Description: Ask volunteers to take trips to area grade schools to educate students about the computer science field. Alternately, as pictured below, invite a grade school class to the college.

Benefits: Adolescence is a time, when children begin discovering themselves and what they enjoy doing. Grade school visits expose the students to new ideas, and encourage both boys and girls to explore computer science.

–  –  –

For more information regarding Idea #75:

Gloria Childress Townsend DePauw University gct@depauw.edu "The fifth-grade girls, who are pictured above, had not yet reached the middle school years, where the literature suggests that interest in computing declines. The event's success supported the views contained in the literature: The expressed confidence and enthusiasm of the little girls equaled or surpassed that of the young boys. I observed no gender differences at all within the computing activities.

The event was fairly easy to conduct. I contacted the elementary school teacher. She coordinated the transportation and parental permission processes. I coordinated the preparation for the event, where my students authored a Web page with country "name and flag" icons that represented links to the individual Web pages that each child would create (stored on the university's server), during our event. The children had each researched a chosen country and arrived at our university with written information and URLs that would provide the content of the Web page that each of my students would help them prepare. At the conclusion of the event, each pair (college student and fifthgrader) presented their country's information, using Web page projection as a visual aid."



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