HAZLETON, Pa. — Hima Patel, a student at Penn State Hazleton, has received a scholarship as a research scholar to attend the Grace Hopper Celebration, the largest conference for women in computing. The conference will be held in Orlando, Florida, in October. It will provide her with the opportunity to meet and share experiences with female students and mentors in the field of computing from around the world.
“I encouraged Hima to apply for the scholarship as I saw the great opportunity it offers to undergraduate students to benefit from the biggest annual career fair for women. I am very excited for Hima and proud of her,” said Assistant Professor of Information Sciences and Technology Nargess Tahmasbi, who was one of the faculty recipients of a scholarship to attend the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Technology in Houston last year. The conference is attended by about 20,000 women from across the globe.
Patel, of Hazleton, is a rising junior majoring in computer engineering and did research on linguistic analysis of cyberbullying tweets with Tahmasbi during her first year at Penn State Hazleton. As part of their research, they analyzed posts from Twitter, placing them into two categories: cyberbullying and non-cyberbullying tweets. Then the textual features of the cyberbullying tweets were analyzed and compared to see which plays a significant role in cyberbullying.
Patel said, “Attending the world’s largest conference for women in technology will help increase my confidence in pursuing my studies and overcoming any challenges I face as a woman in the STEM field. It will also give me a good opportunity to advance my networking skills.”
The GHC Research Scholars program is designed to increase the number of undergraduate women with an interest in computing research. During the program, students take part in a research-focused experience and are provided with a mentor, networking opportunities and advising toward graduate school and research careers in computing.
“I always wanted to make a difference in the field of computing and inspire others from my work. This conference will give me an experience of meeting other women from around the world who share the same passion as me and also help me make connections for future internships and jobs,” Patel said.