Colorado High School Women Recognized with Technology Award

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March 1, 2011

As part of an effort to encourage more young women to choose careers in technology, the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) and  the University of Colorado, the Colorado School of Mines and the Colorado Coalition for Gender & IT will recognize 26 Colorado high-school women for their accomplishments and aspirations in computing and technology.

The young women are Colorado Affiliate winners of the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing, which recognizes high school women for their outstanding aptitude and interest in technology and computing, leadership ability, academic history and plans for post-secondary education. An award celebration that includes Colorado companies, universities, high schools, the winners and their families, and other community members will take place at the University of Colorado Boulder on Saturday, March 5, from 6 to 8 p.m., at the University Memorial Center.

“With technology jobs projected to grow faster than all other job sectors in the next decade, it’s imperative that we nurture the computing aspirations of women, who will make up half the professional workforce,” said Lucy Sanders, CEO and co-founder of NCWIT. “This award allows us to recognize and encourage talent that might otherwise be overlooked.”

Each winner will receive a Flip video camera (provided by Google) along with other prizes. Two Colorado teachers, Jerry Esparza of Thomas Jefferson High School in Denver and Denise Gardiner of Pine Creek High School in Colorado Springs, also will be recognized with the NCWIT Educator Award for Aspirations in Computing, in honor of their support and encouragement for young women’s interest in computing and information technology. 

The NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing is a national competition with regional affiliates, created to encourage the computing aspirations of young women, introduce them to leadership opportunities in the field and generate visibility for women’s participation in technology fields. The award is sponsored at the national level by Bank of America, and at the regional affiliate level by Microsoft, Google and Motorola.

“We are proud to be honoring an outstanding group of young women with this award,” said Ken Anderson, associate professor and associate chair of the Department of Computer Science at the University of Colorado Boulder. “These winners excel in all areas of computing from programming, website design and robotics to 3D graphics and writing about technology. It is important to foster interest in computing by young women to help achieve a national goal (set by the National Science Foundation) in broadening participation in computing and technology.”

Below are the 26 Colorado Affiliate winners of the 2011 NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing: 

Jennifer Anderson, Fairview High School, Boulder
Kelsea Anderson, Pagosa Springs High School, Pagosa Springs
Taylor Andrews, Monarch High School, Louisville
Madison Bennett, Thomas Jefferson High School, Denver
Nicole Blake, Thomas Jefferson High School, Denver
Sara Boatman, Colorado Virtual Academy, Northglen
Erinn Cash, Prairie View High School, Henderson
Shivani Chauhan, Rock Canyon High School, Highlands Ranch
Danica Cox, Swink Jr.-Sr. High School, Swink
Molly Echave, Grand Junction High School, Grand Junction
Nicole Fry, Windsor High School, Windsor
Sabrina Garcia, Antonito High School, Antonito
Ellyn Green, Heritage High School, Littleton
Alyssa Hamlet, Chaparral High School, Parker
Kristen Kagiyama, Green Mountain High School, Lakewood
Hannah Klamerus, Pine Creek High School, Colorado Springs
Elizabeth Mahon, Poudre High School, Fort Collins
Monica Mishra, Peak to Peak Charter School, Lafayette
Mahek Modi, Rock Canyon High School, Highlands Ranch
Kristen Nelson, Overland High School, Aurora
Melodi Oliver, Skyline High School, Longmont
Tanya Petach, Fairview High School, Boulder
Tanya Schulz, Skyline High School, Longmont
Hannah Thomas, Central High School, Grand Junction
Jannine Vela, Frederick High School, Frederick
Hannah Weidman, Centaurus High School, Lafayette

More information about each of the award winners can be found here.

About the Colorado Affiliate of the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing.

The Colorado Affiliate of the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing is led by Professor Ken Anderson of the University of Colorado; Cyndi Rader, senior lecturer at the Colorado School of Mines; and Mary Ann Roe, co-director of the Colorado Coalition for Gender & IT. The 2011awards ceremony is made possible by generous donations from the Department of Computer Science at the University of Colorado Boulder and the Computer Science and Mathematics Division of the Colorado School of Mines.


NCWIT is the National Center for Women & Information Technology, a non-profit coalition of 250 prominent corporations, academic institutions, government agencies, and nonprofits working to increase women's participation in IT and computing. NCWIT helps organizations recruit, retain, and advance women from K-12 and higher education through industry and entrepreneurial careers; provides statistics, research, and best practices; and serves as a national voice of awareness and advocacy for the increased participation of girls and women in IT and computing. Find out more at



Ken Anderson, 303-492-6003
Jenny Slade, NCWIT, 303-735-6600
Carol Rowe, CU-Boulder, 303-492-7426

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