Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Ada Lovelace Day: Technical Women I Admire

This was originally written for my personal blog. I hope everyone who reads it will blog about a woman in technology who inspires them!

A couple of months ago, I signed an interesting pledge: "I will publish a blog post on Tuesday 24th March about a woman in technology whom I admire but only if 1,000 other people will do the same." Boy, time sure flies, and it's now time to write that post!

The women (yes, plural) I would like to write about are my fellow executives for Carleton University's Women in Science and Engineering. They have been inspiring me since ever CU-WISE really got going a year and a half ago.

Serena, Natalia, and Barbora put the wheels in motion a couple of Septembers ago, and then asked me to join in, due to my experience with the computer science undergrad society. Later, Lindsay joined our team when four executives just weren't enough to keep up with the awesome program we were creating! Since then, we've hosted a variety of successful events, gained over 150 members on our mailing list, and participated in multitudes of outreach for young women and girls of all ages.

What I admire the most about these ladies is their dedication to the cause. None of them are in it for themselves - they all simply want to make the university science and engineering experience the best it can be for each and every woman who enrols for these programs at Carleton. We all work together beautifully, and more than that, we seem to have become incredible friends, offering each other support in all our endeavours, school or otherwise.

If you read their bios (linked to the names above), you can see how amazing these women really are. Serena is always kind but honest, has a beautiful artistic touch, and has managed to succeed in a difficult undergrad program while remaining dedicated to CU-WISE. Barbora is never afraid to give and (perhaps more importantly) ask for constructive criticism, and will never let you down. Natalia has brought a huge wealth of experience from her hometown in Mexico, from helping start a new polytechnic university to participating in scouting for almost 20 years. Lindsay jumped right on board despite having just started at Carleton only months after finishing her undergrad at Queen's, and has done an amazing job of organizing many great CU-WISE events. I could gush about these women for many more paragraphs.

I know that each of you can find an inspiring woman close to you, whether she is in technology or not. All you have to do is look.


If you want to share your stories, it's not too late to participate in the pledge! If you write your own blog post, add it to the database here. Or, if you don't have your own blog, add your thoughts to these comments, set up just for this purpose. Check out the mash-up of all the posts made so far here.


Barbora Dej said...

Gail you're a sweetheart. We couldn't have done it as well without you!