It seems so obvious that it hardly needs to be repeated: the future of computing research depends on a reliable pipeline of talented young researchers who share a passion for expanding the boundaries and advancing the frontiers of computation. As the organization that represents academic and industrial computing research in North America, CRA has a vital interest in ensuring the health of the research pipeline. In 2008, after consulting with many organizations, the CRA Board established the CRA Education Committee (CRA-E) and charged it with finding ways for CRA to take additional responsibility for the continued flow of quality researchers to the field.
Computing Research News
“Expanding the Pipeline” is a regular column in Computing Research News. The column serves both as a vehicle for describing projects and issues related to women and underrepresented groups in computing. The column is guest-authored by individuals who share their insight and experiences from their active participation in programs designed to involve women, minorities, and persons with disabilities in education and research. Patty Lopez is the column editor.
Attracting women to study computer science and engineering is an ongoing challenge at colleges and universities across the nation. In the fall of 2007, women in the School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS) at the University of Pennsylvania made up 30 percent of the undergraduate population.
The STARS Alliance is a consortium of regional partnerships among 20 colleges and universities and more than 80 regional partners in academia, education, business and community organizations, with a mission to broaden participation in computing. The flagship initiative of the Alliance is the STARS Leadership Corps (SLC), a multi-year curricular or cocurricular experience for computing students based on the STARS core values of civic engagement and service, leadership, technical excellence, and community.
As technology becomes ever more pervasive in everyday life and across many disciplines, one might expect that the study of Computer Science (CS) would become more appealing to more people, and to a broader spectrum of students. However, the number of undergraduate CS majors in 2009 is still much lower than it was during the dot-com boom of 2000…
Computer science, computer engineering, information technology, informatics, computing and a host of other terms: we have used them all to denote this wonderfully fascinating and diverse thing we do. We have debated connotation and denotation as we seek a clear and compelling exegesis of our field. In so doing, I suspect we have occasionally lost sight of one key aspect, namely the importance of invisibility. What follows is a serious but whimsical look at invisibility’s power.
On September 30, the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing opened at the J.W. Marriott Conference Center in Tucson. The sold-out crowd totaled 1,570 women and men including 520 industry and government professionals, 213 academic faculty and staff, and 678 students.
The Broadening Participation in Computing (BPC) program within the CISE Directorate at the National Science Foundation (NSF), headed up by Program Director Jan Cuny, demonstrates NSF’s serious commitment to increasing the participation of those who have long been underrepresented in computing. Numerous BPC Alliances and Demonstration Projects provide a wide range of services for many underrepresented groups. One such alliance, the Empowering Leadership…
The United States and Canada have been facing a reduction in enrollments in computer science courses and a drop in the number of offerings of high school courses in computing and related subjects. In this report, we will discuss a recent attempt to reinvigorate the stream of high school students interested in this topic. We hope that more students will become interested in computer science if they can pursue interesting applications than if they are only learning to program for its own sake.
Graduate students planning a research career in computer science are often asked, “Do you want to go into academia or industry after your Ph.D.?” However, there is a stealth third option for a researcher: a career at a government lab. This column sheds some light on this “hidden” career. There are many government labs in the United States conducting computer science research (for a partial list, see: http://cra-w.org/govindresearch). Although some of these institutions focus on classified or weapons research, most include unclassified or basic research in their missions, and a substantial minority work only on unclassified research.
It is startling to learn that approximately 16% of the US population of working age have disabilities. Some of these individuals are so cognitively or emotionally disabled that they cannot work, but most are capable of working and contributing to society. Within information technology (IT) fields the numbers compiled by the National Science Foundation (NSF) from various sources are interesting:
The current enrollment crises in computer science and informatics at the post-secondary level have led to a much broader recognition of K-12 education as a critical partner in addressing pipeline and equity issues. The good news is that the current crisis has increased the willingness of many departments and faculty to reach across the educational barriers that have traditionally separated us. The bad news is that many are still not sure how to do so in a way that can lead to sustained improvements at both levels.