Louisiana Tech honors high school students for aspirations in computing, IT

Apr 22, 2014 | Business, Engineering and Science




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Louisiana Tech University’s College of Engineering and Science and College of Business recently hosted and recognized young women from high schools throughout the state at the National Center for Women in Information Technology (NCWIT) 2014 Louisiana Aspirations in Computing Awards celebration. 

The NCWIT event honors young women for computing-related achievements.  They are selected based on their computing and information technology (IT) aptitude, leadership ability, academic history and plans for post-secondary education.  This year, five students were recognized as Aspiration Award winners with two others recognized as Aspiration Award runners-up.

Dr. Jenna Carpenter (far right) stands with the winners of the 2014 Louisiana Aspirations in Computing Awards.

Dr. Jenna Carpenter (far right) stands with the winners of the 2014 Louisiana Aspirations in Computing Awards.

Kiara Horton, a sophomore at Patrick F. Taylor Science and Technology Academy in Avondale, La.; Leslie Morgan and Chris Shin, both seniors at Baton Rouge Magnet High School; and Carlie Procell and Katherine Prutz, both seniors at the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts in Natchitoches, La. were this year’s award winners.  Runners-up were Kayla Reaves, a senior at Parkview Baptist School in Baton Rouge, La. and Ariel Walker, a sophomore at Patrick F. Taylor Science and Technology Academy. 

In addition to the student awardees, the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing Program recognized David Zolzer, a lecturer in computer science at the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts as this year’s outstanding educator for his efforts to promote gender equity in computing.

Dr. Jenna Carpenter, associate dean for undergraduate studies in the College of Engineering and Science at Louisiana Tech, noted that the NCWIT awards can help boost the number of trained IT professionals available to the Louisiana workforce.

“Louisiana Tech is so pleased to be able to partner with NCWIT to recognize the computing achievements of high school girls in our state,” said Carpenter.  “The career opportunities in computing and IT in north Louisiana are growing rapidly.  We hope that events like these will increase awareness among girls about the great careers in these areas, as well as the resources we have here at Louisiana Tech to support their aspirations.”

“Hosting the NCWIT awards event is always a wonderful experience as we have the opportunity to share our campus with some the highest achieving high school students in Louisiana,” said Dr. Tim Bisping, associate dean for graduate programs and research in Louisiana Tech’s College of Business.  “It’s an exciting time in the computing and information systems industry, especially in north Louisiana, and the College of Business is pleased to participate in honoring student achievement in this field as we continue to encourage and develop the next generation of leaders in computing and information systems.”
Sponsors for the Louisiana Tech event were the Industry Consortium for Innovations in Communication, Information and Cyberspace (IC3), and IC3 members CenturyLink, Cyber Innovation Center, Amdocs and the Fenway Group.  Consortium members work together to build a highly skilled, focused and robust workforce for the information and communications systems industry, specifically targeting the education of engineers, scientists and IT professionals.
Written by Brandy McKnight –