OCWiC ACM-W Professional Chapter

The OCWiC ACM-W Professional Chapter is a state wide community of women and men technology professionals from industry and academia, dedicated to the OCWiC mission:

Engaging and empowering Ohio women in computing by building community, celebrating success, and illuminating possibility.

Professional Chapters fit within the ACM-W established framework to provide a stepping stone between local chapters and the (inter)national organization. These community connections are reinforced by biannual regional Celebrations. Ohio is the home of the first ACM-W Professional Chapter, a proof of concept that may be replicated in other regions where Celebrations are already established.

 


More to learn about OCWiC and ACM-W


Our History

In 2005, the Ohio Celebration of Women in Computing (OCWiC) was one of ACM-W’s first regional Celebrations (celebration.ocwic.org). We have continued to have regular biannual OCWiCs since then, and our community has grown bigger with each event.

In 2017, we announced our Community project to provide the Ohio Women in Computing with more networking opportunities and resources in the years between our Celebrations (celebration.ocwic.org) .  

On April 2018, OCWiC was very pleased to be chartered as the first ACM-W Professional Chapter in the U.S. Becoming a professional chapter formalizes the strong relationship we already have with ACM-W . Connecting our regular Celebrations to a Professional Chapter provides stability and continuity for our organization. As a newly formalized non-profit, we will have new responsibilities, which will support us in adopting more professional practices.

Today, we have a website, a blog, an event calendar, a weekly newsletter, private LinkedIn group, and multiple social media channels. Our Community is organized around overlapping “rings” of common interest, with “ring leaders” keeping the energy and ideas going. We also have a team of regional reporters from
ACM-W student chapters around the state, who provide us with news from their areas. Our weekly newsletter has nearly 1000 subscribers. We are planning development on the next phase of our website, to add functionality to make it easier for community members to post and find jobs, volunteer opportunities, events and clubs.

OCWiC ACM-W benefits from stronger ties with local ACM-W student chapters in Ohio, and we can help them connect with each other. As other new ACM-W Professional Chapters are chartered, we will synergize with them to create even more opportunities for a vibrant exchange of ideas with our sister chapters, and to co-produce joint projects and events.

About ACM

The Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) is the premiere global computing society, founded in 1947 to advance computing as a science. Visit the ACM website to learn more.

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About ACM-W

ACM’s Committee on Women in Computing (ACM-W) supports, celebrates, and advocates internationally for the full engagement of women in all aspects of the computing field, providing a wide range of programs and services to ACM members and working in the larger community to advance the contributions of technical women. Visit the ACM-W website to learn more.

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About ACM-W Professional Chapters

Start an ACM Profession Chapter

The professional chapters of ACM’s international committee on Women in Computing (ACM-W) offers professional services, activities and projects that improve the working and learning environments for women in computing. For more information about how to start a professional chapter, check out the ACM-W website: https://women.acm.org/acm-w-professional-chapters/

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ACM-W Celebrations of Women in Computing

ACM-W Celebrations gather women that work or study within the same region together to connect, network and celebrate their mutual interests of Computer Science and technology.  Celebrations typical include keynote speakers from academia or industry, panel sessions on topics such as what to expect in your CS career or the impostor syndrome, workshops on resume writing, communication, interview skills or new technologies, a career fair and opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students to present their work.  Celebrations are organized by volunteers and most agree that organizing a Celebration is one of the most rewarding things that they have done.   ACM will provide some seed funding along with support from Microsoft.  We also can provide web-site hosting, handle your finances and provide plenty of advice and assistance on organizing a Celebration.   Celebrations happen worldwide!  If you are interested in organizing, contact us to discuss!

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Spotlight on Ohio’s OCWiC ACM-W Professional Chapter

(highlighed in the May 2018 ACM-W Connections Newsletter: https://women.acm.org/acm-w-connections-2018-05/ )

We are pleased to announce the formation of the first ACM-W Professional Chapter in the U.S.  Ohio’s OCWiC ACM-W chapter was chartered on April 25th [2018] and hit the ground running.  By being able to name the chapter in a way that complements their regional celebration they are poised to become a community hub for sharing ideas and resources across the state.

Chair Bettina Bair explained, “OCWiC ACM-W will benefit from stronger ties with local ACM-W student chapters in Ohio, and we can help them connect with each other. As other new ACM-W Professional Chapters are chartered around the state, we will have even more opportunities for a vibrant exchange of ideas with our sisters, and to co-produce joint projects and events.”

Bair continues, “Becoming a professional chapter formalizes the strong relationship we already have with ACM-W. Connecting our Celebrations to a Professional Chapter provides stability and continuity for our organization. As a newly formalized non-profit, we will have new responsibilities, which will encourage us to adopt more professional practices.”

For more information about how to start a professional chapter, check out the ACM website: https://www.acm.org/chapters/professionals/how-to-start-a-professional-acm-w-chapter

Ohio’s Celebration of Women in Computing

The Ohio Celebration of Women in Computing is the OCWiC Chapter’s signature event. Over two hundred women studying computer science at universities and colleges across Ohio gather at the Sawmill Creek Resort in Huron in the spring of odd numbered years to connect with other female students, meet women mentors from industry, learn about career challenges and job opportunities, and advance their technical knowledge. The Ohio Celebration of Women in Computing (OCWiC) is a long-running regional conference focused on improving the computing field’s gender diversity gap in Ohio. Women usually constitute less than 20% of the computing field, making OCWiC a very special event.

The students, ranging from freshman to graduate students, are joined by women faculty, women working in information technology (IT) at major Ohio-based companies, national leaders in women in computing movements, and a men who are also addressing gender diversity issues in IT. Over 40 colleges and universities and 20+ companies are represented and many are financial sponsors of the conference. All told, each year 300+ people attend OCWiC, which is held every 2 years and modelled after the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing conference.

The power of having this many women studying computing, teaching computer science, and addressing challenges in industry all in one place is transformative for the attendees. Most students leave the conference with new professional and academic goals, and strategies for achieving them. The OCWiC conference represented a rare and valuable opportunity for women in computing to interact and share experiences in a collegial and collaborative environment.

Read more about the Ohio Celebration of Women in Computing: Posts, OCWIC2017, OCWIC2019

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