The Maryland Center for Women in Computing seeks to bring extraordinary women into computing through outreach, professional development, and community building.
Computer Science Connect is a summer camp designed to introduce middle school girls (as well as boys from underrepresented groups) to computing. During the three-year summer program, students learn to program robots, Scratch, dynamic web pages, and basic virtual reality. Students also learn number theory, cybersecurity, logic puzzles, as well as computer use and safety.
Throughout the academic year, students are invited to continue the program during monthly meetings. They prepare presentations for parents and friends, donors, and the community at the Annual Showcase during the fall and at Maryland Day during the spring.
CompSciConnect's name invokes the new and exciting connections that students will make to Computer Science, with one another, and to a variety of fields in which computing is a significant part.
MCWiC teaching ambassadors lead camp sessions and provide intelligent, positive, and energetic role models for all participants.
This project is supported in part by the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association (AFCEA)-Bethesda Chapter. To learn more about CompSciConnect visit our website.
STEM/Robotics K-12 Outreach
Throughout the year, MCWIC Ambassadors take our curriculum on the road to visit local organizations and schools (ex. local Girl Scout troops) with a fun STEM activity. Activities last approximately 2 hours. STEM options include LEGO Mindstorm Robots, cryptology activities and programming that provide an introduction to computing principles. If your group is interested in learning more about these options, please complete this form to tell us more about your group and your interest.
Weekly Middle School Outreach
In a weekly after-school program, MCWIC Ambassadors provide middle schools in the local community with weekly after-school programs to expose more students to computing through hands-on activities and real world problems. Much of the curriculum is adapted from CompSciConnect. If your school is interested in this program, please complete this form.
High School Computing Workshops at UMD
Each semester, the MCWIC host 1-3 one-day workshops geared toward exposing students to different types of computing. Workshops are opened to all students from 8th-12th grade. Dates will be released during Summer 2017 for Fall 2017. Past workshops include:
Find Your Niche: Creating Animations with Alice Programming
Find Your Niche: Intro to Python
Find Your Niche: Introduction to Interactive Web Development
In collaboration with National Center for Women In Technology (NCWIT), Maryland-Delaware Affiliate Chapter, the Center recognizes young women in high school who pursue their passion in computing in an award ceremony each Spring. Both local and national award winners are invited to attend the event on campus. In the past women from companies including Northrop Grumman serve as table host to encourage these young women to pursue a career in computing. View past winners and events here.
Women's Society Cyberjustu
Each month the Women's Society of Cyberjustu offer a hands on training to students and professionals on relevant issues in cyber in collaboration with MCWIC.
Girls Who Code-UMD Chapter
By 2020, there will be 1.4 million jobs available in computing related fields. US graduates are on track to fill 29% of those jobs. Women are on track to fill just 3%. Girls Who Code was founded with a single mission: to close the gender gap in technology. Join us on Sundays from at the University of Maryland to have fun, learn computer science, and meet awesome friends! (Note:Girls Who Code is not meeting in Spring 2017, but will resume in Fall 2017.)
Cyber Girls Ambassadors
In partnership with WIT (the local professional Women in Technology), UMD Computer Science students go into the high schools to coach high school students to participate in the CyberPatriot competition through after school programs at the local schools.
CompSciConnect Curriculum in a Box
Computer Science Connect “Curriculum-In-A-Box” is a series of hands-on curriculum modules, video lectures and other resources that will be available for free, online. The Curriculum-In-A-Box enables educators, parents, and universities interested in creating outreach programs to do so easily, with pre-packaged, pre-tested curriculum. This project is supported by the Association of Computing Machinery Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education Special Projects Grant.
Grace Hopper Celebration
With support of the BRAID initiative and other corporate sponsors, the University of Maryland and MCWIC are able to provide funding for at least 40 students to the annual Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing each year. Through this experience, students are able to gain valuable connections, resources, career opportunities, and advice on how to successfully navigate industry and academia as a women in computing. Scholarship applications are typically avalible in May and awarded in June.
MCWIC Teaching Ambassadors
Each year undergraduate students are selected to be MCWIC Ambassadors each semester. Through this program, students receive training on best practices for teaching and content. They then apply these skills to go into CompSciConnect, weekend, and after-school programs to teach others computing. Through this experience, Ambassadors create a community between themselves and support each other while teaching the next generation of computer scientists. Applications for this program are typically open in August, January (if needed), and March. To learn more about typical openings, view our Fall flyer.
MCWIC Professional Development Travel Scholarship Fund
The Center has professional development scholarships available to UMD students interested in traveling to conferences, workshops, hack-a-thons, and other professional development events. Applications are typically reviewed within two weeks of submission. Questions about this process can be addressed to email@example.com
To apply, you must:
- Complete this form
- Provide a faculty or professional reference (via the form)
- Submit a current resume and transcript
MCWIC tutoring is offered each semester from the third week of the semester to the last week of classes. MCWIC tutoring began in Fall 2016 for CMSC 131, but expanded to include most introductory computer science classes in Fall 2017. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like more information on the current semester offerings.
Professional Development Series
Each semester the Center provides professional development opportunities for our students. Events can range from insightful talks by industry leaders or faculty from other universities or panels and round-table discussions. The topics range from interview processes, graduate school preparation, adjusting to the work force, creating work-life balance, or finding a mentor. Most events require RSVP. For upcoming events see the calendar.
Computer Science Matters and the Minority Student Pipeline
In Fall 2016, a new AP Computer Science Principles will be released. As part of National Science Foundation (NSF) grants, MCWIC participates in designing the curriculum for the course and training high school teachers on how to teach it. Over the summer, the Center and other partner organizations hold workshops in order to ensure teachers’ comfort with the content and active pedagogical methods needed to make this course successful. The program continues with support during the school year for those teachers. Learn more about CS Matters here.
Grace Hopper Celebration
The Maryland Center for Women in Computing lounge is a community space on the 3rd floor of AV Williams for women in computing to meet, study, and connect. Women can be granted swipe card access to the MCWIC lounge. (AV Williams 3147). To gain access to the lounge, stop by the Center or complete this form.
Points of Contact
AWC (undergrad) and CS Women (graduate) women both send individual notes to all incoming women majoring in computing fields. Current students offer to answer questions before new students arrive, or serve as resources and to welcome new students to the department. If you are a new student and would like to be contacted, please contact email@example.com to be connected to a current student who has volunteered to provide support.
Support of Student Organizations
The Center supports The Association for Women in Computing and GradWomen to build community and create events to empower and support female computing students across campus. These organizations actively recruit women in to technical majors, and work to retain women in the field.
Events and activities include:
- Welcome Back Gathering
- Professional Development Speakers
- Graduate Women's Speaker Series
- Casino Night
- Tutoring Sessions
- Social activities to build community