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May 7, 2013 — Laramie’s Jingyu Li is one of five female Wyoming high school students who have been named winners of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) Award for Aspirations in Computing.
UW and Western Wyoming Community College, affiliates of the NCWIT awards, selected five winners from across Wyoming. Winners were chosen based on their computing-related achievements and interests, solid leadership ability, good academic history and plans for post-secondary education.
“As I plan to pursue a career in applied mathematics and computer science, I appreciate being recognized for my achievements in computing,” says Li, a junior at Laramie High School. “I also hope this award will inspire more girls to develop their interest in computing.”
Li has an extensive computing technology background. As a freshman, she says she set up a server at home with the help of her dad. Using the server, she learned how to use various programs, including ColdFusion, PHP and Java.
She has been recognized for her science fair projects research on artificial intelligence. This includes awards from Intel, the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center, Wyoming NASA Space Grant Consortium, Yale Science and Education Association and the Air Force Academy.
“I have also done quite a bit with mathematics, and found math and programming to go hand in hand,” she says. “In my current computational methods course, I have been learning to implement algorithms in the most efficient way with C++ and parallel programming.”
NCWIT is a nonprofit community of more than 300 prominent corporations, academic institutions, government agencies and nonprofits that work to increase women’s participation in technology and computing.
“Encouraging young women’s interest in technology careers is critical,” says Lucy Sanders, CEO and co-founder of NCWIT.
Other Wyoming Affiliate Competition winners, listed with their high schools and hometowns, are:
--Rylee Marron, Cody High School, Cody.
--Lia Eggleston, home-schooled, Laramie.
--Blake Marquardt, East High School, Cheyenne.
--Korina Ike, Hulett High School, Hulett.
The awards for each winner include a trophy, swag bag and a 64 gigabyte USB flash drive pre-loaded with a software development environment, according to Allyson Anderson, a senior lecturer in UW’s Computer Science Department.
The Women in Science Conference is designed to raise young women’s (grades 7-12) interest and excitement in science, technology, math and engineering (STEM) -- career fields typically dominated by men. Accomplished professional women discuss their experiences in these fields.
The conference is hosted by the Wyoming NASA Space Grant Consortium, which sponsors education and research programs in the state of Wyoming to support NASA goals. One of the goals of NASA and UW is to get more women and ethnic minorities involved in educational programs.
For more information about the Women in Science Conference, contact Michele Turner, program coordinator, Wyoming NASA Space Grant Consortium, at (307) 766-2862 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Jingyu Li, a junior at Laramie High School, is one of five recipients from Wyoming to receive the NWCIT Computing Award.