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Year: 2016

Retaining High Tech Women Once They’re in the Door

Karen Holtzblatt began the lecture by gathering some biodata on the attendees: how many students are in the room how many folks with 1 or 2 years of work experience how many managers (the majority of hands went up.  “We … Continue reading

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Grace Hopper 2016: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Ever felt stuck in your career? In this panel, executives from a variety of tech companies — from tiny startups to giants — will share…

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Responsible Information Sharing Talk: Takeaway

I attended Elaine Sedenberg’s talk Responsible and Privacy-Preserving Cybersecurity Information Sharing Using Public Health as a Model.  This talk was part of the Security/Privacy Track at the 2016 Grace Hopper Celebration.  Elaine is a doctoral candidate at UC Berkeley. At Jefferson I work with PHI and was interested to see how that experience might help … Continue reading “Responsible Information Sharing Talk: Takeaway”

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Step 72.2: Blur the Mentor/Mentee Line

The first session I attended at GHC is Shattering the Old Boys’ Club: Rediefining Mentorship for Women in Tech, which was a panel discussion and a short presentation by Nisha Dua (founder of Built by Girls), Stasia Efremkina (student at UPenn), Natasha Shah (software engineer at Verizon), and Susan Kelly (Director of Software Development at […]

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Grace Hopper 2016: Learn to Sell Your Big Idea through Storytelling

Your big idea might be the foundation of a hot new start-up, your company’s new engineering program, or a pitch for that perfect role you…

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GHC 2016 poster session – amazing work!

Single word to describe the Poster session is Enthusiasm. Students and Professionals from various backgrounds and varied subjects presented their work with  passion.  Tirelessly and patiently they presented their posters with a smile. The posters were grouped by topics like Robotics, Bioinformatics, Data science and so on. In between presentations they were bonding with each other, which was added…

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Public speaking at GHC16

Book cover (pic from amazon)

Karen Catlin and Poornima Vijayashanker are two amazing women empowering technical women to improve their public speaking skills and help them take their rightful place at the table. Both of them started off as software engineers and later got into consulting in public speaking and other topics. They’ve co-authored a book on the topic – Present! A Techie’s Guide to Public Speaking. I got the amazing opportunity to attend a workshop where they shared some tips from their book.

Karen Catlin

The workshop was presented in a ‘I show then You do‘ fashion where the presenters talked us through the steps to achieve, walked us through a real-life example and then made go through the exercise ourselves. 

Poornima Vijayshanker

They walked us through the steps of identifying what we can speak afer inventorying our achievements over the past year, whetting interest in the topic with others at the table and coming up with a suitable story to open our story with. Almost every attendee walked away with a topic they could potentially present on. That was the best part!

They shared some tips to overcome stage fright, prepare good slides, practicing etc.

Apart from the techniques to identify what you can speak on, my key takeaways were the following – 

  1. Power Posing ala Amy Cuddy
  2. Meet and greet your audience before the talk to overcome nervousness and gather data for Q&A
  3. Story telling to draw the audience in
  4. How to handle Q&A (crowd source if you do not know the answer, use the meet & greet data to create questions)
I’m looking forward to develop my speaking topic further and see where it takes me. For more details on the session, refer to the handy notes on the systers wiki.

Also, I’ve started reading their book to learn more. If I’ve intrigued you enough, you can get your copy from here.
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Harnessing Technology for the Public Interest — Lessons from Latanya Sweeney

Arbitrary design decisions dictate the way we live our lives.

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#GHC16 Daily Download: Wednesday, October 19

#GHC16 Daily Download: Wednesday, October 19

Read about all the highlights from Day 1 of #GHC16!

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Women in Future Tech @GHC16

Have you ever seen almost 15000 women in a single place? You should have been at the Toyota Center this morning. The excitement was palpable in the huge auditorium while waiting for the opening keynote of the 16th annual Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC) to begin. Music DJ Roonie DJ entertained us with popular numbers while we waited.

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