National Effort to Recruit Women into Computing Continues

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Lewis University Launches Effort to Recruit More Women into Computing Majors

Published: August 10, 2015.

Lewis University is partnering with the National Center for Women in Information Technology (NCWIT) to launch a new strategic plan for recruiting more women into their majors in computer science and computer engineering.

This strategy consists of recruiting and retention strategies including a variety of best practices that will help to recruit and retain more women. For recruiting strategies, the team is developing a signature event in early spring that will bring women, who are prospective students, current students, alumni, and local high school students, together for an event. Lewis University will also be the host university for the Chicago-Area Award for Aspirations in Computing which is an event that honors dozens of high school women for their aptitude in computing. This team will also be updating some marketing materials to help reach out to new students. For retention strategies, the team is developing a set of surveys that will help them sustainably track their student experience to identify any areas that need help. They will also develop a fall welcome breakfast early this fall and they will identify pathways to help Lewis computing students attend the national Grace Hopper conference.

The university faculty and administrators are excited about learning more about what they can do to improve the recruitment and retention of women in these programs. “This is an opportunity to expand on the opportunities Lewis University has been providing young women and teens for many years. Computer Science is a fun and rewarding field for females. I’m glad more women will be able to experience that,” commented Dr. Cynthia Howard, Associate Professor of Computer and Mathematical Sciences at Lewis University.

“Encouraging young women’s interest in technology careers is critical: our workforce needs their creativity and their innovation,” said Lucy Sanders, CEO and Co-founder of NCWIT. The goal of this launch is to immediately increase the visibility and raw numbers of women in these programs.

The team includes faculty members from the university, including Dr. Cynthia Howard, Dr. Amanda Harsy, and Dr. Dana Dominiak and NCWIT Extension Services Consultant Dr. Rebecca Dohrman. Dr. Dohrman has worked with NCWIT since 2009 with a variety of university clients interested in increasing the number of women in computing programs. Dr. Dohrman said the following about the Lewis faculty team working on this initiative, “This team is incredibly dedicated to the students at Lewis University and they have a passion and drive for this effort to increase the percentage of women computing majors in their programs at Lewis University. It is a pleasure to work with them.”

About Lewis University: Lewis University is a Catholic university in the Lasallian tradition offering distinctive undergraduate and graduate programs to nearly 7,000 traditional and adult students. Lewis offers multiple campus locations, online degree programs, and a variety of formats that provide accessibility and convenience to a growing student population. Sponsored by the De La Salle Christian Brothers, Lewis prepares intellectually engaged, ethically grounded, globally connected, and socially responsible graduates. The seventh largest private not-for-profit university in Illinois, Lewis has been nationally recognized by The Princeton Review and U.S. News & World Report. Visit for further information.

About NCWIT: NCWIT is the National Center for Women & Information Technology, a coalition of over 300 prominent corporations, academic institutions, government agencies, and nonprofits working to increase women''''''''''''''''s participation in IT. NCWIT''''''''''''''''s work spans K-12 and higher education through industry and academic careers. Find out more at

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