Last month Cisco Empowered Women’s Network (CiscoEWN) sponsored a San Jose State University STEM Challenge together with CloudNOW. The goal was to promote technology career paths for college women and to recognize students’ innovative efforts at San Jose State University.
Through my involvement with CloudNOW, a non-profit organization whose mission is to drive the professional development of women from school age through their working career I got to meet Debra Caires, the Director of Internships Programs at San Jose Statue University. Debra has a relentless energy and passion in fostering STEM careers for college students and for promoting gender diversity. Debra organized this STEM Challenge event where we also announced CloudNOW;s Top College Women in Cloud awards. We are accepting submissions for these currently and all college women and men too are encouraged to apply.
The CiscoEWN generously supported this event in a number of ways. The guest, speaker at this event was Tami Newcombe, Vice President of Sales at Cisco Systems. The CiscoEWN offered students ways to connect with them to reap the benefits of the many seminars and events that they run.
Cisco’s Tami Newcombe opened the event with reflections on her own career trajectory spanning a mix of engineering and sales executive leadership. Tami encouraged students “ to go break glass” and be bold in their career paths but also gave practical advice on being attuned to the dynamics of the organization that they work at. Tami talked about the value of internships and described it as the “new interview” in the job search process for students and employers alike.
I shared further details on their Top College in Women in Cloud award and was pleased to see great interest. We are looking forward to strong representation in from San Jose State University.
The event concluded with the judging of 40 student STEM posters by judges from Cisco Systems, CloudNOW and Adobe Systems. Students created these posters based on their contributions to industry during their internships. The technology areas spanned Big Data, cybersecurity, Internet of Things to emerging digital technologies.
We awarded first and second place prizes to Jordan Jennings and Sindusha Doddapeni respectively.
Photos by San Jose State University Student Eileen Wai