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UTOUG's Women In Tech Program

Goal: Mentor women in undergraduate CS and MIS programs at local universities with the intention of encouraging women to pursue careers in technology and give them confidence to succeed in these careers. The mission is to facilitate one-on-one partnerships between college students and professionals to achieve a result of more women in tech majors graduating college.

Scholarship Program
In 2015, UTOUG started it's Women In Tech Scholarship Program. We are so proud to introduce our first 3 recipients; all amazing individuals all pursuing tech degrees within Utah. 

  Happy Shandilya

Happy Shandilya grew up in a remote village in India. She is currently enrolled in the Masters in Information Systems program at University of Utah and graduating in 2016.

Happy’s dreams to create a startup in the remote village which she grew up in in India is very inspiring. She hopes to inspire girls to think in innovative ways and “come out of the kitchen” to implement their ideas. She loves technology because it’s for everyone and has no boundaries, including the local India village women who can use smartphones to access videos to help others with healthcare and other ways of life.

Happy is proud that she’s reached a position where she has access to the best knowledge and technology. She says that no matter what happens she is all set to inspire those girls in her remote village.

  Sarah Patterson

Sarah Patterson attends Utah State University and is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Management Information Systems. After graduating in 2016, Sarah would like to become a database administrator or business intelligence engineer, and possibly move up to CIO some day.

Sarah says it’s extremely satisfying to successfully solve problems and know that it’s helping other people do their jobs at the same time. She loves the problem solving element of technology.


Emily Cookson

Emily Cookson is in the Masters of Information Systems program at BYU, graduating in 2016. Her capstone project is focused on recruiting women into the Information Systems Program, as well as providing resources to them.

She is the co-president of the Association for Information Systems BYU Chapter. She wishes to work as a Data Scientist upon graduation where she’ll get the opportunity to perform advanced analytics on large data sets, investigate trends and patterns in that data, and challenge myself to understand the why behind the data.

Emily says that she loves the feeling of coding and not knowing where the time has gone!

A study conducted by the American Associate of University Women states that "in the mid-1980s women earned slightly more than one-third (36 percent) of bachelor's degrees in computer science; by 2006 that number had dropped to 20 percent."

It is our belief that UTOUG can work towards changing these statistics in Utah by influencing women in college to pursue computer science or MIS degrees and help them finish the undergraduate program.

The mentoring program is on hold currently as we are re-evaluating a way to make this program more effective.

 57% of girls say that if they went into a STEM career,
they'd have to work harder than a man just to be taken seriously.
From Girl Scouts of the United States

For Professionals Interested in Mentoring

Do I need to be a female to mentor a student?
No! Men and women are both encouraged to be mentors.

What qualifications do I need to be a mentor?
  • Employed in Utah in a technical career
  • At least 1 year of professional experience
  • Able to commit to a 12 month mentoring relationship

How much of a commitment is this program?
We ask that you commit to the program for one year. You can set a schedule with your mentee(s) on how often you will meet and for how long. We encourage each mentor to meet with your mentee at least quarterly and also to allow the mentee to shadow you at your workplace for a day to observe what a career in tech is really about.

Can I mentor more than one student?

How do you match me to a college student to mentor?
We will attempt to match you to a student at a campus near your workplace and who is interested in pursuing a career in a role similar to yours.

How do I sign up?
For Women Considering a Career in Tech

I'm a busy college student. How much of a commitment is this program?
We ask that you commit to the program for one year. You can set a schedule with your mentor on how often you will meet and for how long. We encourage each mentor to meet with you at least quarterly and also to bring you to their workplace for a day for you to observe what a career in tech is really like.

How do you match me to a mentor?
We will attempt to match you to a mentor who works near your campus. We will also try to match you to someone who works in a role that you are interested in.

What are the requirements of the program?
To be involved, you must be a female in a CS or IS undergraduate degree program in Utah. Also, we are asking that all of our mentees give back by mentoring as part of the She++ program. More details on this program can be found here: http://sheplusplus.stanford.edu/mentorfaq.php

How do I apply for the program?
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