Eighteen percent of bachelor’s degrees in computer science are awarded to women. Harvard Women in Computer Science want to see that number dramatically increase, however, and will have its hand in trying to bolster engineering engagement this weekend.
The student organization is hosting Women Engineers Code at the Harvard Innovation Lab, a conference for collegiate women interested in computer science. The event is designed off of Grace Hopper, the world’s largest gathering of women technologists, that Harvard WCIS annually attends.
“We wanted to bring that closer to home,” said Harvard WCIS Co-president Jenny Liu in a previous interview with BostInno.
On Saturday, February 8, a slew of workshops and smaller break-out activities will take place, including some hands-on training by the event’s corporate sponsors, which include Facebook, Dropbox, Microsoft, Intuit and Google. A Recruitment Bootcamp will also be held, allowing students to bring their resume by for review or participate in a mock interview.
Keynote speeches will be delivered in between the various activities and be carried into Sunday. Speakers include: Rebecca Parsons, CTO at ThoughtWorks; Kimber Lockhart, senior director of engineering at Box; Marie Louise Kirk, partner at Goldman Sachs; Ann Wollrath, an early developer of Java; and Min Wang, senior staff research scientist at Google Research.
To conclude the conference, a hackathon will be held on Sunday, February 9, beginning at 11:30 a.m. Come 8 p.m., the best projects will be granted awards that have yet to be announced by the group.
Although the WECode conference is currently sold out, it’s only one of several events Harvard WCIS hosts. Throughout the year, the organization holds study breaks, dinner with professors and fireside chats to help bolster the community. Most recently, the group visited local middle schools to teach younger generations the power of computer science during Hour of Code, a country-wide initiative that took place in December and was designed to inspire K-12 students to partake in programming.
“We want to be able to build a community locally,” Liu told BostInno. “We want to create a bigger community around the Boston area.”
Harvard WCIS just needs your help to do so.