St. Louis Affiliate Award for Aspirations Event: Four Questions with Professor Rebecca Dohrman

On Saturday April 5th, St. Louis hosted its inaugural Affiliate Award for Aspirations in Computing event. The ceremony included a panel of college women, another panel of professional women in IT, and the awards ceremony plus the reception. The keynote was by Sheila Burkett. The event took place at the Millennium Center at University of Missouri St. Louis and there were five winners, two runners-up, and one national winner who were honored. NCWIT caught up with Assistant Professor of Communication at Maryville University, Rebecca Dohrman, also an Extension Services consultant, and asked her to tell us about the event, and her personal connection to the Award for Aspirations in Computing.
NCWIT: What motivated you to be a part of this event/program?
Rebecca Dohrman (RD): I have worked as a consultant with NCWIT for several years and I wanted to bring the energy and excitement around bringing more girls into computing to my local area.
NCWIT: What was the most inspiring moment of your participation or of the event?
RD: The winners were so happy talking at the reception after the event, which was a great feeling. It was also very special that the Educator of the Year brought her family to the event so they could all watch her get the award!
NCWIT: What is one lesson you learned during your involvement that has really stuck with you?
RD: Acknowledgement is important. It is really essential to take the time to say to these young girls, "We want you in computing. We need you in computing." They really appreciate the time and they are going to do amazing things.
NCWIT: What’s your own personal reason for wanting to see more women in IT?
RD: I love to see young women succeed and reach their highest aspirations. I know so many young women who have the ability, but lack the encouragement to continue into computing, and I also know the field of computing will continue to grow. We need young women to enter and stay in the field to ensure technology is created by a diverse workforce.
Were you at the St. Louis event? Tell us about your experiences in the comments! 
Aspirations Community: 
Missouri: St. Louis & Southern Illinois

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