Proud to be a Winner

NOTE:NCWIT and Bank of America awarded the 2009 NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing on Saturday, March 7 to 32 high-school women from across the country. Below, Kitt Vanderwater — who was a winner of the August 2008 NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing — writes about her thoughts on being an award-winner.
Upon receiving the NCWIT Award [for Aspirations in Computing], I was, in a word, shocked. I come from a pretty small town, and frankly, we don’t win much of anything. For the only girl in computer science (CS) in my entire school to win something was big. I think that winning this award gave me a lot more confidence to continue on in my career.
Right now, in college, I am proud of being at the top of my CS class. The girls in my class are tossed under the usual girl-in-computer-science stereotype.  They expect us to be here to look for a guy, or not understand the chapter. I am just proud of being where I am and getting to do what I love doing. Over break I was studying for our school’s ACCA programming competition, which is a lot of fun!
Although I wish I could tell you I spent my winnings on a new wardrobe, it’s being spent on college — specifically study abroad — and my laptop is so fun and useful for school. (It runs Facebook much faster than my computers at home.)
I hope in the future that I’ll end up with a fantastic internship, and later a great job. It’s so helpful to have won the NCWIT Award, because companies can easily recognize it as a national contest.

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