Bragging Rights: Mason’s First Google Anita Borg Scholar

Posted: May 13, 2010 at 1:03 am, Last Updated: May 12, 2010 at 4:34 pm

By Jennifer Edgerly

Sherri Williamson. Photo by Laura Sikes

Sheri Williamson, a senior in the accelerated master’s program in Computer Science, has been selected to receive a Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship.

The Google Anita Borg Scholarship is open to women undergraduate seniors or graduate students studying computer science or computer engineering at a U.S. university.

Scholarship recipients receive a $10,000 award for the 2010-11 academic year. Scholarships are awarded based on the strength of each candidate’s academic background and demonstrated leadership. Applicants also must complete three essays, submit two letters of recommendation and, once being selected as finalist, must participate in a phone interview.

In addition to being invited to the Annual Google Scholars’ Retreat, which will be held in June in Mountain View, Calif., where Google is headquartered, Williamson will attend the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing in the fall.

“Dr. Anita Borg was a truly remarkable woman. In particular, I am inspired by how she encouraged and brought together women in technical fields,” says Williamson.

“I am thrilled to be able to attend the Scholars Retreat and the Grace Hopper Conference and meet other women in computer science from around the country and learn about what they are accomplishing.”

Williamson previously received the Northern Virginia Technology Council-Daniel R. Bannister Scholarship.

According to the scholarship web site, “Dr. Anita Borg devoted her adult life to revolutionizing the way we think about technology and dismantling barriers that keep women and minorities from entering computing and technology fields. Her combination of technical expertise and fearless vision continues to inspire and motivate countless women to become active participants and leaders in creating technology.”

“In her honor, Google is proud to honor Anita’s memory and support women in technology with the 2010 Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship. Google hopes to encourage women to excel in computing and technology and become active role models and leaders in the field.”

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