Academic Alliance News – September 2016


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NCWIT Academic Alliance Newsletter

September 2016

Welcome to the 2016-2017 academic year! We hope you are energized to begin another year with the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) Academic Alliance (AA). Please peruse this NCWIT AA newsletter to get updates on opportunities available to you and other news you may want to know.

To learn more about the AA, visit Encourage your peers to join by directing them to our online form: Membership is free!


Did you complete your NCWIT AA Member Survey?

While membership in the AA is free for institutions, it requires the participation of individuals. If you’ve been wondering how you can be more involved in the AA community, simply click the unique survey link that was sent to you on August 19, 2016 (with reminders sent September 8 and September 19) from to see which opportunities best utilize your skills. The deadline for completing the survey has been extended to September 25. Thank you in advance for your help!


AA Faculty Opportunities

We hope that you find your membership with NCWIT beneficial to both you and your institution. NCWIT has several award opportunities for faculty and students currently open to our members. Please consider submitting a short nomination or proposal for at least one of these opportunities or passing along the information to the relevant person(s) or group(s). We thank our Award sponsors: Microsoft Research,, and the NCWIT Board of Directors.

Not sure if you or your organization is a member of the NCWIT Academic Alliance? Check our list of members: Want to become a member (at no cost)? Complete this short request for membership.


2017 NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund: Call for Proposals (Deadline: October 30, 2016)

NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund

The NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund, sponsored by Microsoft Research, awards NCWIT’s AA members at non-profit, U.S. institutions (excluding U.S. territories) with start-up funds of up to $10,000 per project to develop and implement initiatives for recruiting or retaining women in computing and IT. To date, 47 member organizations have received a total of $545,450 throughout the first 12 rounds to grow their technology-related outreach program.

This year’s call for proposals focuses on using existing, effective promising practices for recruiting and retaining women and underrepresented populations into your computing-related majors. We are especially looking for proposals that lead to increased PhD production. Proposals will be accepted through midnight MDT on October 30, 2016. Winners will be announced in March 2017 and — new this year — each winning group will be reimbursed for one person’s travel to the 2017 NCWIT Summit! Find out more information at fund, and submit a proposal.


2017 Harrold and Notkin Research and Graduate Mentoring Award: Call for Nominations (Deadline: November 2, 2016)

Harrold and Notkin Research and Graduate Mentoring Award

The NCWIT Harrold and Notkin Research and Graduate Mentoring Award is given in memory of Mary Jean Harrold and David Notkin, in honor of their outstanding research, graduate mentoring, and diversity contributions. The award, sponsored by the NCWIT Board of Directors, recognizes faculty members from non-profit, U.S. institutions (excluding U.S. territories) who combine outstanding research accomplishments with excellence in graduate mentoring, as well as those who advocate for recruiting, encouraging, and promoting women and minorities in computing fields at both a local and national level.

The recipient’s institution will receive a $5,000 gift from NCWIT and the winner will be reimbursed for their travel to the 2017 NCWIT Summit. Find out more information at, and submit a nomination for a peer or yourself soon.


EngageCSEdu – What can you do in your COURSES to move the needle on women’s participation in computing? Check out EngageCSEdu!


It’s simple. Increase student engagement, and help broaden participation in computing by doing three things: “Make it matter, ” grow inclusive student community, and build student confidence and professional identity. These basic principles are the foundation of the EngageCSEdu Engagement Practices Framework. Check it out on the EngageCSEdu site ( You’ll also find great information on the things you can do as a teacher to support these principles.

While you’re there, find inspiration in our collection of nearly 1,400 materials for teaching introductory computer science courses. All materials in the collection have been peer-reviewed for quality and for effective use of at least one of these engagement practices. And, don’t forget to get copies of the Engagement Practices Framework poster to hang in your office, department mailroom, or grad student lounge! For more information on EngageCSEdu or how to get a poster, contact


NCWIT Thank Your Boss Campaign

Did you submit your boss’ name to our Thank You Campaign? We would like to thank them for seeing the value in your extra-curricular participation with NCWIT by sending them some of our resources and a letter of thanks. Without passionate, change-leading members (such as yourself), our efforts to work on reform for girls and women in computing wouldn’t be making the impact it is! If you complete the form by September 26, they will be included in the mailing.


Student Opportunities (Please share!)

Create and Expand ACM-W Groups on Campus: Call for Proposals (Deadline: November 1, 2016)

Please pass these NCWIT student group opportunities along to any Women in Computing (WiC) organizations on your campus.

Applications for the NCWIT Student Seed Fund, sponsored by, are now open! This fund offers an opportunity to create or expand ACM-W chapters on college and university campuses.

This year, grants will be awarded in the following categories:

  • Trailblazer Grant (up to $15,000): Funding at this level is for well-developed groups with a history of institutional support that are interested in institution-wide projects such as funding large-scale events or course development.
  • Amplification Grant (up to $5,000): Funding at this level is intended for existing groups interested in expanding their impact through existing and new programs on their campus and in their geographic region.
  • Start-Up Funding (up to $3,000): Students looking to start a new ACM-W chapter on campus can apply for funds to help launch their group.

Applications can be submitted online. The application deadline is November 1, 2016. Winners will be notified by December 2016. In order to be eligible, the host institution must be an NCWIT non-profit Academic Alliance member within the United States. To become a member (membership is free), simply submit this Academic Alliance Membership form.


Topplers Domino Award

NCWIT Entrepreneurial Alliance Associate Member Representative Herb Morreale established the non-profit Topplers in 2002, which offers an annual award for undergraduate students studying computing. The Topplers Domino Award encourages students to “think big” by seeing how the work of a notable computer scientist or computing professional has significantly impacted modern society. Reaching 43,000 undergraduate computer science students at 300+ universities across America, the 2016-2017 Domino Award competition provides winners with an all-expense paid trip to the South-by-Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival in Austin, Texas in March 2017. At SXSW, students will meet VIPs from around the world and see many exciting, new innovations firsthand. Topplers is committed to diversity. Women have been among the award winners for many of the past few years, and have accounted for nearly half of all entries. The contest opens September 15, 2016. For more information, contact


NCWIT Aspirations in Computing Opportunities

Aspirations in Computing

NCWIT Aspirations in Computing (AiC) provides a long-term community for female technologists, from K-12 through higher education and beyond, encouraging persistence in computing through continuous engagement and ongoing encouragement at each pivotal stage of their educational and professional development.

Here are five different ways that YOU can attract and retain students in computing with NCWIT AiC:

  1. Encourage your female students to join the AiC Community (financially supported by Bloomberg with college entry sponsorship and additional support by HPE and Qualcomm) of 7,000+ technical women. All undergraduate and graduate female students majoring and minoring in computing-related fields are eligible!

  2. Promote the NCWIT Collegiate Award (sponsored by HPE and Qualcomm). All undergraduate and graduate female students majoring and minoring in computing-related fields are eligible! Up to six winners receive a $10,000 cash prize and up to 12 Honorable Mentions receive a $2,500 cash prize. All Awardees receive a trip to the NCWIT Summit.

  3. Partner with an AiC Community Member or members of your Women in Computing (WiC) group and apply for an NCWIT AspireIT Award. Using a near-peer model, AspireIT teams teach younger girls fundamentals in programming and computational thinking in fun, creative environments.

  4. Help us spread the word to all technical high school and college women, as well as the educators who support them that applications for the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing, the NCWIT Educator Award, and the NCWIT Collegiate Award are now open! Use our sample messaging to share info with your networks:
  5. Learn more about today’s women in technology and the educators who support their passion for computing by reviewing NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing, the NCWIT Educator Award, and the NCWIT Collegiate Award applications. Your knowledge and expertise is greatly needed and valued!
  6. Join 100 other Academic Alliance members, and host an Aspirations in Computing Affiliate program where you and your institution can interact with educators, influencers, tech professionals, and K-12 students in your local area. The highpoint of the Affiliate season are the regional Awards ceremonies for the inspiring high school women and educators.

Please contact us at with any questions you have!


Spread the NCWIT Word

NCWIT at the Grace Hopper Celebration

NCWIT members and those interested in becoming a member are invited to attend the NCWIT Member Reception on Thursday, October 20 from 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. CDT at the Grove Restaurant, located in the green space across from the Houston Convention Center in Houston, Texas. Learn more and RSVP at


  • NCWIT is speaking at an Academic Corner session called “Want to be a Bias Interrupter?” on Wednesday, October 19 from 2:00 p.m. – 3:50 p.m. at the George Brown Convention Center.
  • You can learn how to equip your recruiters with research-based recruiting and hiring tips from an NCWIT social scientist before they hit the Expo floor on Tuesday, October 18 from 5:00 p.m. – 6 p.m. // RSVP up to four people:
  • We’ll also staff a booth in the GHC Career Fair (Booth #2103), so please stop by to say “Hello,” pick up some resources, and hear what’s new at NCWIT.

Looking forward to seeing you there!


Where do I find my organization at NCWIT?

The NCWIT AA now has more than 450 member organizations with more than 1,500 individuals representing them. You can find them all listed alphabetically here. Take a look at yours, and email, if your entry needs any updates.

Want to see a map of where AA member organizations can be found? Check out our new map here, and find your NCWIT neighbors!


NCWIT’s Member Activity and Change Tracker (ACT)

ACTOur members told us that they wanted to be able to see what other members were doing. They wanted to find members they could collaborate with on papers and at conferences. They wanted to share cool things they’ve done with other peer members… We created the Activity and Change Tracker (ACT tool) to help with all of that, and now all we need to do is have you use it!

NCWIT has committed to the National Science Foundation (NSF) that our members will state their goals. Have you ever achieved a goal you didn’t set first? If you’re in the half that hasn’t submitted goal(s) yet, please do it now.


NCWIT Enrollment Data

NCWIT needs your help for our upcoming NSF proposal. We need all 4-year Academic Alliance members to provide a count of your declared majors by gender and race/ethnicity by the end of October. Next week, we will send you a spreadsheet and additional instructions. If you don’t already know these numbers, begin talking to your university’s Institutional Research Office or department staff. These data are essential for describing how your change efforts are working and getting new funding for NCWIT to continue supporting you. Help us help you— get your enrollment data! Stay tuned.


NCWIT Resources

NCWIT recently launched a new feature on our website called Explore NCWIT. You can find this feature by scrolling down on the NCWIT homepage. Explore NCWIT asks visitors to respond to a couple of questions in order to provide the most relevant content for each visitor, therefore allowing easy access to alliances, programs, resources, and other useful information.

NCWIT resources provide research and theory-based practices and recommendations to equip change leaders to take action toward increasing women’s meaningful participation in technology. Our resources are free and available in digital and print formats. This year, we published some great new content and updated some of our most sought-after materials. Check them out here!

Hint: All NCWIT Higher Education resources can be viewed here. Additional filters can be found on the right side of the screen, such as “Goals” or “Resource Type.” We’ve also added a filter for resources most useful to Community College members.

This year, NCWIT launched the Critical Listening Guide: Just Because You Always Hear It, Doesn’t Mean It’s True, an interactive resource. Use this guide to help identify common misunderstandings that surface when people talk about how to increase the participation of women. Learn to spot “red flags” that indicate if a particular discussion is headed in a direction that may not be research-based or effective.


Amigos de TECHNOLOchicas

“TECHNOLOchicas”Mark your calendars because on October 1, 2016, the TECHNOLOchicas will be featured at the Latina Power in STEM Conference, hosted by Glendale Community College in California.

During this half-day event, 150 young Latinas from the Los Angeles area, along with their parents and teachers, will participate in hands-on activities and learn about the exciting opportunities that come from pursuing careers in tech. Who better to inspire them and share this message than our very own TECHNOLOchicas!

This event marks the one year anniversary of the TECHNOLOchicas campaign. Join us in celebrating the accomplishments and success of TECHNOLOchicas, which is made possible thanks to your continued support!


NCWIT Summits

NCWIT May 2017 Summit

The annual NCWIT Summit will be held May 22-24, 2017 at the JW Marriot Tucson Starr Pass Resort and Spa in Tucson, Arizona. Stay tuned for the agenda, speakers, and other information:

2016 NCWIT Summit

Thanks to many of you for the timely feedback on the 2016 NCWIT Summit evaluation. We are already using it for our 2017 NCWIT Summit planning.


Academic Alliance (AA) Meeting at the 2016 NCWIT Summit

We enjoyed seeing more than 300 of our members at the NCWIT Summit AA meeting; we missed those of you that were not able to join and hope to see you at the 2017 Summit. Below is a wrap-up of what we covered.

Our Monday AA meeting started out by hearing FlashTalks from very brave members about what they are doing at their institutions to make change happen. We would like to thank Amber Benton (Michigan State University), Xyla Foxlin (Collegiate Award Winner at Case Western Reserve University), Ravi Gandham (South Seattle College), Rita Powell (University of Pennsylvania), and Stephanie Worden (Syracuse University) for sharing their stories with us.

During our Wednesday AA meeting, AA Pacesetter Panelists inspired us with some details of the goals they have been working on. NCWIT’s External Evaluator Elizabeth Litzler moderated this panel, and we would like to thank all participants for their preparation and willingness to share their stories including; Lillian (Boots) Cassel (Villanova University), Sarah Linz (Lansing Community College), Cedric Stallworth (Georgia Tech), Gloria Townsend (DePauw University), and Sandy Vlasnik (University of Nebraska, Omaha).

Members were then given an hour to discuss their goals with peers while NCWIT’s social scientists roamed the room and were available for specific questions.

Haven’t gotten around to entering your goal or updating it? Please do so now in the ACT tool!


AA Co-chair and Project Team Leader Changes

This year, Maureen Doyle (Northern Kentucky University) joined Robert Beck (Villanova University) and Maureen Biggers (University of Indiana, Bloomington) as a Co-chair of the AA. Patricia Morreale (Kean University) rotated off as AA Co-chair, and we thank Pat for all of her help. We are excited that she will continue to participate in the AA leadership through the AA Advisory Committee, which includes all previous AA Co-chairs. We look forward to working with Maureen in her new leadership role in the AA.

After we receive the AA Member survey responses, we’ll have some new project teams as well as new faces on some teams. You should have received your unique survey link on August 19 with reminders on September 8 and September 19. We really count on our members to help, so please look for the survey link from and volunteer by September 25 in one of the many areas where we need your help.


Academic Alliance (AA) Awardees Honored at the 2016 Summit

2016 NCWIT Undergraduate Research Mentoring (URM) Award Recipients

2015-2016 Project Co-leaders: Christine Alvarado (University of California, San Diego), Anne Ngu (Texas State University, San Marcos)
2015-2016 Co-chair Liaison: Robert Beck (Villanova University)

Congratulations to the 2016 NCWIT URM Award recipients!

2015 NCWIT Undergraduate Research Mentoring Award Winners

2016 URM Award winners from left to right: Luz Gonzalez (representative from sponsor AT&T), Bonita Sharif, Daniel Garcia, Tiffany Barnes, and Amy Hurst


NCWIT Student Seed Fund Winners Announced!

2015-2016 Project Leader: Blanca Polo (Leeward Community College)
2015-2016 Co-chair Liaison: Robert Beck (Villanova University)

We have now awarded nearly $250,000 to student computing groups from Student Seed Funding! Below are some ideas to inspire your computing group’s submission, and you can view all winners here.

Spring 2016 NCWIT Student Seed Fund Winners Announced!

Trailblazer Award Winner

  • University of California, Irvine will identify undecided/undeclared students and target them via emails and other means of communication to encourage students to apply for their mentoring program. Once accepted into the program, students will benefit from the “community” via mentoring, tutoring, workshops, and a tour at a technical company.

Amplification Award Winners

  • Drexel University plans on expanding their mentoring program to provide under-class women with a meaningful contact within the college who can empathize with the unique challenges posed to women in STEM.
  • Florida Atlantic University will enlarge their Exam Week Support and College Day programs, as well as host a Welcome Back Social for students.
  • Tennessee Technological University aims to organize a monthly professional development session where they will expose members to various techniques and trends in the computing field, with an emphasis on cybersecurity.
  • University of Florida will travel to local middle and high schools to provide education to the Gainesville youth that want to learn how to write code and create a community of Gainesville female computer scientists.

Start-up Funding Winners

  • Bucknell University plans to recruit more members into their new group via an orientation event who will then be mentored and inspired about CS.
  • Carleton College will strike a balance between organizing larger and smaller events, which will serve different purposes all intended to educate and build the computer science community.
  • Loyola University Maryland will hold workshops for local Baltimore city high school women to promote interest in technology and inform them about the many computer science career paths available, have technical alumni speak at meetings, send a few members to the Grace Hopper Celebration, and host a workshop for members geared towards obtaining a job in the field.
  • Oberlin College aspires to organize activities that will cover the professional and educational aspects of pursuing computer science, while fostering a beneficial social network amongst the involved students.
  • Rowan University seeks to recruit new members and do service projects such as the “Handomatic” project where people volunteer their resources for people to receive prosthetic limbs, and expand into K-12 outreach.
  • Southern Utah University intends on participating in the Rocky Mountain Celebration of Women in Computing in Salt Lake City, the Southern Utah Code Camp, and will host two speakers.
  • University of Maine plans on creating an ACM-W chapter that will hold social events to build student networking, include a mentoring program, host industry and academia invited speakers, and start a K-12 Outreach-Volunteer program.


Fall 2015 NCWIT Student Seed Fund Winners Announced!

Trailblazer Award Winners

  • Indiana University, Bloomington will conduct research on campus to understand campus-specific experiences and systemic issues. The institution will also create resources for male advocates in academia.
  • University of North Carolina at Charlotte will create workshops that focus on using improv techniques to challenge covert sexism and racism. The school will also produce video segments that can be used as educational resources on other campuses.

Amplification Award Winners

  • Cal Poly State University, San Luis Obispo will host a “Women in Computer Science Day” event for prospective students, focused on getting women and historically underrepresented students interested in CS majors.
  • Miami Dade College will host a four-hour recruitment “Technology is Everywhere” event that will include a keynote speaker, a networking reception, and small interactive break-out sessions.
  • Missouri University of Science and Technology will create a mentoring program for high school students, using hands-on activities to get women interested in tech fields. They will track how many of these high school student participants pursue a computing major in college.
  • Renesslaer Polytechnic Institute will host a day-long “Women in Tech Summit” for all schools in the upstate New York area. The institution plans to invite both universities and interested high school students to participate in the event.
  • University of Pennsylvania will host an all-women hackathon for women who attend college in the Philadelphia region, implement a semester-long “WiCS Passion Projects” event, and will put a mentoring program into action for women and CS where freshmen and sophomores can pair up with a junior or senior mentor to aid in retention.
  • University of Minnesota, Twin Cities will create a campus-based mentoring program where upper-level women in CS will be able to mentor entry-level women in CS.
  • Villanova University will host a one-day conference for faculty, staff, and alumni that will be free and open to any students and employees in the region. The group is focused on networking across generations and disciplines.

Start-up Funding Winners

  • Brigham Young University will use major-selection fairs, in-person visits to 100-level courses, websites, social media, and in-person visits to other pre-professional clubs to recruit members.
  • California State Polytechnic University, Pomona will use social media, existing student groups, and visits to 100-level classes to recruit members.
  • Columbus State University plans to recruit members by emailing all registered CS majors, performing in-person visits to 100-level CS classes, and tabling in the lobby of academic classes during the first week of the term.
  • Farleigh Dickinson University plans to recruit students by using email blasts, flyers in academic buildings, and in-person visits to 100-level classes. The school will also host an Hour of Code event to recruit prospective members.
  • Michigan Technological University plans to recruit members through meetings, social activities, and academic department outreach events. The school will also host a monthly meeting focused on recruitment.
  • Monmouth University plans to host a regional celebration of WIC, using this event as a recruitment effort for new members.
  • Santa Fe College will use social media and print media to recruit members for the group. They also plan to work with the Admissions Office to identify prospective students interested in newly created BS degrees for CS/IT majors.
  • University at Albany, SUNY will take trips to regional industry locations. The institution plans to recruit members through existing social media platforms, faculty referrals, posters in academic buildings, and announcements at other pre-professional groups.
  • University of Pittsburgh is planning a campus screening of She++. They will recruit members through CS Activities Fairs, Student Activities Fairs, and with flyers on the benefits of membership.
  • University of San Francisco plans to host a Hackathon and a campus speaker series. They will recruit members through visits to 100-level classes, tabling on campus, and emails to students registered in CS classes.


2016 NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund Winners Announced!

2015-2016 Co-chairs: Maureen Biggers (Indiana University—Bloomington), Robert Beck (Villanova University), Patricia Morreale (Kean University)

Our 2016 Seed Fund winners were notified in February, 2016 and honored at the 2016 NCWIT Summit. Get inspired and submit your proposal by October 30, 2016. View details here.

  • Dordt College will offer 10 annual scholarships for girls who attend the college’s residential overnight summer camp. Dordt College also plans to expand upon the school’s new “Girls Who Code” program, visiting sites in surrounding communities where females work within the information technology industry while fostering young female students’ interest in computer science education. Project Principal Investigator: Kari Sandouka (February, 2016)
  • Florida A&M University intends to purchase “Raspberry Pi” kits to be used in outreach activities for the purpose of creating instructional videos directed at high school and middle school students. The program will also implement a monthly research seminar designed to encourage interested undergraduate students to pursue undergraduate and graduate research avenues in computer science. Project Principal Investigators: Hongmei Chi, Sharmini Pitter, Maurice Edington (February, 2016)
  • Georgia Institute of Technology plans to implement its “reFOCUS” program in order to increase the number of qualified, underrepresented female applicants in the college’s PhD programs. “reFOCUS” is a two-day program that includes informational sessions, lab tours, networking opportunities, interactive workshops, and individual meetings with faculty members. Project Principle Investigators: Jennifer N Whitlow, Cedric Stallworth (February. 2016)
  • Northeastern University aims to offer a unique opportunity of peer recruitment efforts involving various student groups on campus. The primary outcome of the recruitment will be a video documenting why students transferred to the College of Computer and Information Science (CCIS), and it will be showcased in many different places including the CCIS website. Project Principal Investigator: Andrea Parker (February, 2016)


2015 NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund Winners

2016 NCWIT AA Seed Fund Winners top row (left to right): Carla Brodley (accepting for Andrea Parker), Nick Breems (accepting for Kari Sandouka), Daron Green (Managing Director for sponsor Microsoft), Arlisha McQueen, Cedric Stallworth. Bottom row (left to right): Sharmini Pitter, Jennifer Whitlow.


2016 Harrold and Notkin Research and Graduate Mentoring Award Winner Announced!

2015 NCWIT Harrold and Notkin Award Winner2015-2016 Project Co-Leaders: Nancy Amato (Texas A&M University, College Station), Elizabeth Belding (University of California, Santa Barbara)
2015-2016 Project Team Members: Rick Adrion (University of Massachusetts, Amherst), Duncan Buell (University of South Carolina, Columbia)
2015-2016 Co-chair Liaison: Patricia Morreale (Kean University)

The 2016 Harrold and Notkin Research and Graduate Mentoring Award recipient is Carla Brodley, Professor at Northeastern University. Brodley is the third recipient of this award and was honored at the 2016 NCWIT Summit. Be sure to submit a nomination for the 2017 award by November 2, 2016. Details can be found here.


Reminder to Complete the AA Member Survey

This is another plea for needed volunteers to run the NCWIT AA and completion of the AA Member Survey by Sunday, September 25 at midnight MDT to help us continue our programs and keep the alliance fresh. You should have received a unique link via an email from on August 19 with reminders on 9/9 and 9/19.



Enjoy your 2016-2017 academic year; I’m sure your start is as busy as this newsletter suggests!

Academic Alliance Co-Chairs:
Robert Beck, Villanova University
Maureen Biggers, Indiana University
Maureen Doyle, Northern Kentucky University

AA Program Manager: Kim Kalahar
National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT)
University of Colorado, Campus Box 417 UCB, Boulder, CO 80309

NCWIT Partners
Copyright ©2016 National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), All rights reserved.
University of Colorado, Campus Box 417 UCB, Boulder, CO 80309 | | 303.735.6671


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