Each year, VMware CodeHouse Palo Alto and Atlanta exclusively invites a select group of women technologists from universities across the United States for a multi-day, virtual experience. Attendees work on a real-world project that will positively impact STEM education for underrepresented communities and then present the team’s solution to a panel of VMware judges along with the opportunity to network with tech industry thought leaders. The immersive experience provides students with opportunities to learn new skills, grow their network, and develop their teamwork through collaboration.
This year, VMware CodeHouse Atlanta attendees were introduced to ‘Go’ language, while VMware CodeHouse Palo Alto attendees learned how to use OAuth 2.0. In just a short amount of time, students mastered and implemented these technologies in their respective solutions that targeted topics in STEM education, diversity, equity, and inclusion.
After wrapping the two successful VMware CodeHouse events last month, we sat down with VMware University Talent Program Managers Ashley Green and Katherine Nguyen to learn more about the events and this year’s winners.
VMware Careers: Ashley, tell us more about year’s VMware CodeHouse events in Palo Alto & Atlanta?
Ashley Green: Sure! VMware CodeHouse proudly represents women and underrepresented minorities in technology. This year, nineteen Black and Latina women studying bachelor’s degrees in Computer Science took part virtually in our VMware CodeHouse Atlanta, and for our VMware CodeHouse Palo Alto event, twenty women studying advanced degrees took part. Outside of coding, the attendees enjoyed a variety of team-building activities, heard from influential keynote speakers (including our very own CEO, Raghu Raghuram), and networked with other women in technology.
VMware Careers: The three-day event ends with attendees presenting their projects to a panel of judges. Please share more about the winners of VMware CodeHouse Atlanta 2021 and what their project was about?
Ashley Green: This year the Grand Prize Winners at VMware CodeHouse Atlanta 2021 were Martha Weldeyesus, Paola “Rose” Rosado, Oraly Pena Valdez, and Shadedra Williams. Their project, “Codesivity” is an app designed to educate people of all ages, races, backgrounds, and disability statuses about diversity by writing source code in an array of programming languages. The project functioned through a fun game of questions and answers that tests their knowledge of the syntax associated with their selected programming language. In the future, the team hopes to upgrade the application by including more questions, levels, programming languages (C, C++, Go), and information graphics to aid in hacking the narrative.
VMware Careers: Katherine, the following week VMware CodeHouse Palo Alto 2021 took place. Tell us more about the winning project.
Katherine Nguyen: The following week we awarded Chloe Fu, Stuti Misra, Thea Rossman, and Yating Wu as the first-place winners of VMware CodeHouse Palo Alto 2021. Their project, “Circles,” is a web application that allows underrepresented groups within the technology industry (women in STEM, LGBTQ, people with disabilities, etc.) to accelerate their careers with companies that support diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace. In the application, users can engage in transparent forums about company culture, research employee experiences, and statistics, and ask/answer career-related questions that may impact their workplace experience. As a result, this team hopes their platform will connect users with career opportunities that support their individual needs while incentivizing employers to change and implement better practices around diversity, equity, and inclusion.
VMware Careers: Reflecting on this year’s VMware CodeHouse events what would you say made them so successful?
Katherine Nguyen: It was the commitment, drive, and dedication of our mentors, volunteers but most of all our attendees that made this year’s virtual VMware CodeHouse events so successful. Every year we are impressed by the brilliance of our attendees and their final projects, and this year was no different!
Are you a woman pursuing a Bachelors’s, Masters or Ph.D. degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering? Do you want to be part of VMware CodeHouse 2022?