Conversations for Change | Higher Ed Insights: Meeting of the Minds with CAHSI

Blue and green graphic featuring the | Higher Ed Alliance logo and text: Meeting of the Minds; Featuring Computing Alliance of Hispanic-Serving Institutions (CAHSI); Join the Webinar; Wednesday March 6th; 3:00 PM EST"
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Moderated by Dr. Ann Gates, director of the Computing Alliance of Hispanic-Serving Institutions (CAHSI), this session showcases several facets of CAHSI’s work as a Broadening Participation in Computing (BPC) Alliance Accelerator member and highlights how NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance members can benefit from partnering with multiple BPC Alliances. Dr. Gates was joined by Dr. Enrico Pontelli (New Mexico State University), Dr. Jessica Rivera (The University of Texas at San Antonio), Dr. Nayda Santiago (The University of Puerto Rico – Mayaguez), and Dr. Pat Morreale (Kean University) to discuss CAHSI, Hispanic servingness as it relates to both staff and leadership, capacity building in AI research and education, and BPC partnerships.

About the Meeting of the Minds series

The Meeting of the Minds is a web-based discussion series, hosted by the NCWIT HigherEd Alliance. By bringing together experienced practitioners and evidence-based research, the series takes on today’s largest broadening participation challenges in computer science. NCWIT Meeting of the Minds is open to anyone who is interested – geared toward postsecondary computer science faculty, staff, researchers, graduate students, and those in student-facing roles.

Meet the Moderator

CAHSI Director Dr. Ann Quiroz Gates is currently serving on the Committee on Equal Opportunities in Science and Engineering with the National Science Foundation (NSF), a longtime NCWIT Strategic Partner. Gates is also Senior Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs and Senior Advisor to the Provost on Strategic STEM initiatives at The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), an NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance member institution. In 2015, UTEP was recognized, under Dr. Gates’s leadership, as one of NCWIT’s Extension Services Transformation Awards Honorable Mention recipients as a result of their excellence in recruiting and retaining women in computing education. To learn more, read her UTEP bio.

Meet the Panelists

Dr. Jessica Rivera is an Adjunct Faculty member who specializes in Educational Leadership and Foundations Computer Science and Postdoctoral Fellow with the Pathways-IES program at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), another NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance member institution and a past participant in NCWIT’s Extension Services one-on-one broadening participation in computing consulting program. Rivera also co-founded the Latina Postdoc Collective, an organization dedicated to propelling Latina postdocs into faculty positions and advancing diverse voices in academia. To learn more, read her UTSA bio.

Dr. Enrico Pontelli is the Dean of Arts & Sciences and Regents Professor at New Mexico State University (NMSU), an NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance member institution. Under his leadership, NMSU has been an avid participant in NCWIT’s higher education systemic change programs, including Extension Services’ one-on-one consulting program and the current Higher Ed Learning Circles. He also serves on the leadership team with CAHSI as Director of the Young Women in Computing Program, and has been a peer-referee for various conferences and journals on logic programming and parallel computing. To learn more, read his NMSU bio.

Dr. Nayda G. Santiago is a professor at the University of Puerto Rico – Mayaguez (UPRM), where she teaches capstone courses in Computer Engineering and Computer Architecture and is also an NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance member rep. A member of CAHSI since 2006, she works with undergraduate researchers using the Affinity Research Group (ARG) Model. Dr. Santiago is a lifetime member of the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS), senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and is also also a member of the Hispanic Engineers National Achievement Awards Conference (HENAAC), the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM),  and the Latinas in Computing (LiC) organization. Dr. Santiago was also awarded the 2017 CRA-E Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentoring Award, 2008 HENAAC Educator Award, and 2008 UPRM Distinguished Alumni award. To learn more, see her UPRM bio.

Dr. Pat Morreale is the Chair of the Department of Computer Science and Technology at Kean University, an NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance member institution, and holds a leadership position on the CAHSI Executive Board. In 2023, she was awarded the Joanne McGrath Cohoon Undergraduate Service Award, which is conferred annually by the NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance. She is a past co-chair of the NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance, and has also led committees on faculty excellence in undergraduate research mentoring with NCWIT, the Computing Research Association (CRA), and the Council of Undergraduate Research (CUR). To learn more, read the NCWIT blog about her award recognition and the details in her listing in the faculty directory.

About the NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance

The NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance is a nationwide coalition of post-secondary institutions that are dedicated to increasing equity and inclusion in computing by broadening participation of underrepresented and marginalized groups. To join the NCWIT Higher Ed Alliance, simply complete this Higher Ed Alliance Membership Form to be sent further details regarding membership. Please direct any questions to [email protected].

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