On November 1st, 2016, WICS collaborated with the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) and ICS Student Council (ICSSC) to put on a Facebook diversity panel. There were around 30 attendees at this event, less than what was expected. Facebook brought current employees (entry-level to many years of experience) and also a current intern to answer questions about life at Facebook, as well as the importance of diversity at Facebook and in the tech industry. Some of the questions asked in the panel were already pre-submitted, but students were encouraged to jump in with their own follow-up questions. There was also a LOT of pizza at the event, so no one went home hungry.
On October 26th, we hosted a study session since it is currently midterm season. More than 30 of our members gathered to study for midterms and do homework together. It was a fun environment to encourage each other through the busiest time of the quarter. Free pizza was provided instead of the usual snacks we have for study sessions, so it made it an even better time!
On October 19th – 21st 36 Students who were awarded a scholarship by the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer sciences and the BRAID(Building Recruiting and Inclusion for Diversity) program, attended the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing. The Conference took place in Houston, Texas and is considered to be one of the largest gathering for women technologists, just this year alone there were over 15,000 people in attendance. The attendees not only had the opportunity to attend multiple speaking events to further increase their knowledge in the tech industry, but also to attend the Expo Fair where they had the chance to network with many different companies such as Microsoft, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. Many students interviewed with companies during the conference while others scheduled interviews for a later time. All in all it was an incredible experience full of professional growth and fun!
On October 17th, WICS had their mentorship reveal, which consisted of 54 pairs! Mentors were given nametags, and the mentees were given a mission to find the balloon with their name on it, pop the balloon and then search for their mentor. The popping noises were pretty loud, but it made the atmosphere lively as the mentees were pretty anxious about who were the mentor was and vice versa. After everyone found their mentee/mentor, they were given the task to talk with one another and get to know each other, then mingle with another pair of mentors/mentees and introduce themselves to each other. This was a good idea so pairs can bounce off ideas from one another on how often to meet with your mentee/mentor, and possibly even have group bondings. Everyone was satisfied with meeting their match, so thanks Samantha Applebaum, who is the one in charge of the Mentorship Program and matching each pair! You did a wonderful job!
On October 13th, WICS collaborated with PwC to host an info session to help people amp up their interviews! Around 24 attendees came to the event, giving everyone the chance to actively participate. The PwC representative, Kaitlin Cottrell, gave a brief presentation covering working at PwC and opportunities there before providing tips on how to ace an interview. Attendees then paired off to ask common interview questions to practice. After taking some time to provide feedback, participants discussed with the representative which questions they found difficult, and the representative suggested ways to give good answers. The discussion transitioned into a Q&A where attendees asked questions about the interview process and working at PwC. The event closed with a resume reviews and one-on-ones. The event was very successful. Everyone had fun while learning ways to help them land a job offer. Thank you to Kaitlin for coming and making the event so interactive and enjoyable, and thanks everyone to joined us for this event!
On the 10th of October, WICS hosted their annual WICS games! There were over 78 attendees who came to our event. Company representatives from Google, ProSky, SendGrid, Facebook, and Pariveda Solutions came to join us in our games. Representatives were separated into different groups with WICS members that competed against one another. We started the first round off by letting each group get to know their own members, having them create a group chant and post a funny picture on WICS social medias. There were three rounds of challenging problems that needed to be solved within a time limit. Near the end of the event, scores were calculated and everyone was given the chance to take home swag. This event was a huge success. Everyone enjoyed the games and had a fun time while also given the chance to meet company representatives and other UCI students. Thank you to all the representatives for playing with us and everyone who joined in on our event!
On the 5th of October, WICS held a social event where anyone could come socialize and meet the WICS Board members for this school year! There were about 29 attendees who came to our event, which was located in Aldrich Park. Underclassman and new transfer students were able to ask questions about what WICS is like, how to get more involved, how are the courses for being an ICS major, and so on. Everyone participated in a social activity which involved remembering the person on your left and right names. There were also a couple of students who were playing catch with a frisbee! If you missed out on this event hopefully you can go to the next one and thanks for coming by!
On the 29th of September, WICS hosted a Mentorship Mixer event. There were over 85 attendees who came to the event with 39 mentors and 47 mentees.
First everyone sat down and got a enjoy a quick presentation by Sam Applebaum, our internal vice president on how the mentorship program would be run this year. Then, Sam invited all the mentors to line up and present about themselves to all of the mentees. Each mentor mentioned their major, jobs, and their car status to tempt mentees into choosing them as their mentors.
Then everyone split up by group and the mentors and mentees all got a chance to mingle with one another and chat for the rest of the night. With this chance to get to know each other face to face, each mentee and mentor will hopefully have some good ideas on who to pick as their partner!
In Week 1 of the new 2016 – 2017 school year WICS hosted our very first general meeting! Our normal meeting place of DBH 6011 was packed full with over 115 attendees.
Attendees got enjoy some free pizza and refreshments along with learning about all the events WICS will be hosting this upcoming school year. Some of the new things introduced were: our new membership option, our revamped mentorship program, and all of our upcoming events!
If you missed out on this meeting, you can learn more all about the stuff we talked about here on our website, and our Facebook page.
We look forward to an amazing school year with everyone!
The Women in Information and Computer Sciences (WICS) at University of California, Irvine is proud to announce that we have been awarded the Trailblazer Award through the National Center for Women & Information and Technology (NCWIT) and Google.org! This $15,000 grant will go towards creating an “Explore ICS” Program for undergraduate undeclared students. Recruitment for this program will begin in the fall and applications will be released in mid-fall quarter. Accepted students will have access to the following:
- Peer mentorship
- Exploratory workshops
- Tour at a technical company
Additionally, this program will be heavily evaluated and assessed by Kate Lehman, a doctoral candidate at UCLA, for its impact on undeclared students, and by Katherine Lo, a graduate student at UCI, for its impact on mentors.