The award, sponsored by the National Center for Women and Information Technology, honors young women at the high school level for their computing-related achievements and interests.
“With tech jobs in Rhode Island growing at 3.5 times the rate of other jobs, it is vital to grow the talent pool locally,” said Ruthe Farmer, chief strategy and growth officer for NCWIT. “These impressive young women are proof positive that there is fantastic talent and potential among the young women of Rhode Island.”
Carlino was recognized for playing a "critical role in engaging and educating our students," said JoAnn Johnson, manager of youth and education programs for Tech Collective.
The Awards are part of the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing program, a talent development initiative designed to increase female participation in technology by providing structured, long-term engagement and support from middle school through the workforce.
Aspirations awardees are selected for their outstanding capacity and interest in computing and technology, proven leadership ability, academic history, and plans for post-secondary education. In addition to student honorees, NCWIT recognizes educators who demonstrate passion and commitment in engaging their students in the technology fields.
Welcoming remarks were offered by Andrea Castenada, chief of accelerating school performance at the Rhode Island Department of Education; and Adriana Dawson, director of employer outreach and engagement for Roger Williams University. Ruthe Farmer, chief strategy and growth officer for NCWIT, spoke to the mission of the Award for Aspirations in Computing program as well as the need for more female IT professionals.
“With tech jobs in Rhode Island growing at 3.5 times the rate of other jobs, it is vital to grow the talent pool locally,” said Farmer. “These impressive young women are proof positive that there is fantastic talent and potential among the young women of Rhode Island.”
This is the second year the Aspiration Awards have been presented in Rhode Island. Last year, awards were presented to one educator from Rogers High School and three students from Rogers High School, Chariho High School, and Times2 Academy.
"Working with the support of the Roger Williams University Office of Outreach and Engagement and Tech Collective, this event allows us to take two steps towards addressing the balance of women in tech fields,” said Dr. W. Brett McKenzie, Professor of CIS/WebDev at the RWU Gabelli School of Business. “First is to recognize and encourage young women with interest in the field. Second is to demonstrate to them that there is a support network in a field where they may not have many female peers. Bridging the generations by recognizing the talents of these young girls and ensuring there will be mentoring throughout a developing career is a unique mission of NCWIT that we are delighted to support."
For more information about the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing Award, visit https://www.aspirations.org/.
Photo caption: Front Row (L-R): Becky Souriyavong, award winner; Nora Wallace, award winner; Amy Ells, INNOVEX; Antoinette Bongiorno, award winner
Second Row from Bottom (L-R): Natalie Benkovich, AIPSO; Jennifer Potter, Dassault Systèmes; Hannah Deen, award winner
hird Row from Bottom (L-R): Joan Peckham, URI; Carol Giuriceo, RI STEM Center at RIC; JoAnn Johnson, Tech Collective; Faith Robinson, Hasbro
Back Row (L-R): Dr. Brett McKenzie, RWU; Mary Sullivan; Ruthe Farmer, NCWIT