Reflections on the 2016 Grace Hopper Celebration

My GHC experience can be divided into 3 broad categories: 

1. Talks

There were a LOT of talks at GHC this year. The keynote is definitely worth going to because GHC brings in some of the most amazing keynote speakers. My favourite one this year is by Latanya Sweeney, who is the director of the Data Privacy Lab at Harvard where she delivered an inspirational speech about how one can use data science and data sets to influence decision-making at the national policy level and how she has enabled her students to do the same. Read more

-CS Student

This year, I had the privilege once again to attend Grace Hopper thanks to WiCS and the University of Waterloo. I could go on and on about how awesome the conference was and list all the reasons why any woman in tech could greatly benefit from attending, but one particular session I went to deeply resonated with me. Read more

-3B CS Student

After attending the Grace Hopper Conference for the first time, I ended off the week feeling more inspired and empowered to stay in the tech industry as a woman. Prior to this experience, I constantly worried about not wanting to stay in this field due to the feeling of unfulfillment. However, I quickly realized during this conference that this feeling may be due to the fact that I have only worked in this industry for eight months as an intern. Read more

-2B CS Student

2016 was the first year that I attended GHC, but I certainly hope that it will not be my last.

I reconnected with old friends and bonded with new people who possessed refreshingly unique backgrounds but shared my passion for empowering women through technology. Read more

-Amy Liu, 2A CFM Student

I have volunteered on the Women in Computer Science Undergraduate Committee since Winter 2015, but attending the Grace Hopper Celebration was the first time I was able to comprehend the scale of impact that our efforts have had both on my peers as well as myself. I had heard from several people before the conference that there would be 15,000 women attending, but the reality of that didn't hit me until I was sitting in an NBA stadium filled with other women who had the same passion for and determination to pursue computer science. Read more

-Anna Lorimer, 3A CS and C&O Student

I was incredibly lucky to attend the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing (GHC) this past October. I learned a lot about different types of tech, interacted with an incredibly diverse group of women in tech, and changed my understanding of the impact that technology can have on the world around us. Read more

-Talia McCormick, 2B CS Student

The Grace Hopper Conference had some amazing keynote speakers and I think it reminded me of the importance of having role models to look up to. I watched a keynote made by Dr.Latanya Sweeney, she talked about the importance of data privacy, the impact it has on society and our societal responsibility to be aware of our work and the real life repressions it carries. Read more

-Geirthana Sivagnanalingam, 3B CS Student

This year I attended the Grace Hopper Celebration for the first time. Because I have been to several academic conferences within my primary areas of interest (AI and data sciences) in the past, and I saw that there were streams within these areas being offered at Grace Hopper, I was expecting my week in Houston to be somewhat similar to my experiences at other conferences. In fact my expectations were very wrong: Grace Hopper did expose me to some new technologies and techniques in my field, but it was so much more that that. Read more

-Ali Wytsma, CS Master’s Student

You can never fully comprehend the hype of Grace Hopper until you attend the Opening Keynote and walk through the Expo Hall. The whole celebration has a powerful atmosphere of energy and positivity from technical women of all ages, backgrounds, and stages of career. I left this celebration with a renewed passion to succeed in a career in tech.

-Meagan Furgal, 2A CS Student

The Grace Hopper Conference is a must for every woman in technology. The networking and learning opportunities are endless and I can guarantee you will leave feeling uplifted and inspired to innovate and succeed.

-Simran Kaur, CS Student

Overall, I enjoyed the conference and would like to attend again. It is a unique place to meet many fantastic and inspiring women, both in academia and industry. At the same time, it is a great venue for hearing about the most recent developments in a variety of fields: AI, machine learning, privacy & security, IoT and many others.                               

-Ivana Kajic, CS PhD Student

The best thing about GHC isn't about the talks or the free stuff companies hand out, but that you are in a conference where almost all 15,000 attendees are women in computer science and the environment is inspirational in itself.

-CS Student

After being surrounded by young and like-minded people for so long, it was an inspiring experience to leave the bubble and interact with women of different background and experience levels at GHC!                

-Amanda Valoppi, CS Student

It was kind of nerve-wracking to be surrounded by around 15,000 talented, accomplished, and inspiring women. Nerve-wracking, but awesome.       

-CS Student

Grace Hopper is a unique experience to discover the many applications and careers in computing. These three days were filled with new experiences and opportunities.

-3A Yuan Zhang, Statistics with Minor in CS Student

The Grace Hopper Celebration for Women in Computing were 3 unforgettable days of my life. Was it crazy? Yes. Was it tiring? Of course it was. The few weeks after getting back were exhausting. Would I do it again? ABSOLUTELY. If someone were to tell me that another Grace Hopper is happening somewhere on the other side of the world, I’d drop everything and book my plane tickets right now. It was truly inspiring.

-CS Student

Learning and networking are two constant characteristics of growth and this conference gives you endless opportunities to learn and network. I have come back with a positive attitude and a different perspective on computing. No longer shall I be scared of anybody who questions my ability to do computing and tried to bring me down, because there are people who really want to see you grow.

-Urja Goyal, 2A CS Student   

The Grace Hopper Celebration is an amazing opportunity to meet strong leaders, contributors and innovators in computing many of whom share the experience of being one of the few women in their workplaces. This event had an extremely positive impact on me and my drive to stay and progress in my career in computing.

-CS Student

GHC will reinforce your belief that you are what a computer scientist or mathematician or engineer looks like. It will inspire you to not limit yourself and to push the boundaries. Stand for your passion and don’t let the norms scare you.

-Vanshika Agnihotri, 2A CS Student

Grace Hopper is a wonderful opportunity to find community to meet other women in tech, hear valuable advice from industry leaders, and figure out what you yourself want from the tech industry.

-2A CS Student

GHC 16 is one of the most important events of my career.

-3A CS Student

I would encourage women in computer science to attend the Grace Hopper Celebration as it is a passion-driven environment where you can learn, network and meet fellow CS-ters.

-3A CS/Bioinformatics Student