From 10% to 40% Female CS Majors: The Harvey Mudd College Story

Date: 
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 - 11:09am

UCSB COMPUTER SCIENCE DEPARTMENT PRESENTS
DISTINGUISHED LECTURE:

FRIDAY, JANUARY 20, 2012
10:30 AM – 11:00 AM Reception
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM Talk
Engineering Sciences Building, Room 1001

HOST: Subhash Suri

SPEAKER: Maria M. Klawe
President, Harvey Mudd College

Title: From 10% to 40% Female CS Majors: The Harvey Mudd College Story

Abstract:

In 2006, much like at many other institutions, about 10% of HMC’s CS majors were female. At that time only a third of HMC’s students were female, but CS was an aberration. About 20% of the Physics majors and close to 30% of the engineering majors were female. Four years later 40% of HMC’s CS majors were female, exactly the same percentage as the whole HMC student body. This talk describes how the CS department accomplished this change.

Bio:

Harvey Mudd College is led by Maria Klawe, HMC’s fifth president, who began her tenure in 2006. A renowned computer scientist and scholar, President Klawe is the first woman to lead the College since its founding in 1955. Prior to joining HMC, she served as dean of engineering and professor of computer science at Princeton University. During her time at Princeton, Klawe led the School of Engineering and Applied Science through a strategic planning exercise that created an exciting and widely embraced vision for the school. At Harvey Mudd College, she led a similarly ambitious strategic planning initiative, “HMC 2020: Envisioning the Future.”

Klawe joined Princeton from the University of British Columbia where she served as dean of science from 1998 to 2002, vice president of student and academic services from 1995 to 1998 and head of the Department of Computer Science from 1988 to 1995. Prior to UBC, Klawe spent eight years with IBM Research in California, and two years at the University of Toronto. She received her Ph.D. (1977) and B.Sc. (1973) in mathematics from the University of Alberta.

Klawe has made significant research contributions in several areas of mathematics and computer science, including functional analysis, discrete mathematics, theoretical computer science, human-computer interaction, gender issues in information technology and interactive-multimedia for mathematics education. Her current research focuses on discrete mathematics.

Klawe is a past president of the Association of Computing Machinery in New York, past chair of the board of trustees of the Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology in Palo Alto, and a past trustee of the Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics in Los Angeles. Klawe has held leadership positions with the American Mathematical Society, the Computing Research Association, the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics and the Canadian Mathematical Society.

Klawe is one of the ten members of the board of Microsoft Corporation, a board member of Broadcom Corporation and the nonprofit Math for America, a fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, a trustee for the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute in Berkeley and a member of the Advisory Council for the Computer Science Teachers Association. She was elected as a fellow of the Association of Computing Machinery in 1996 and as a founding fellow of the Canadian Information Processing Society in 2006. Awards include Vancouver YWCA Women of Distinction Award in Science and Technology (1997); Wired Woman Pioneer (2001); Canadian New Media Educator of the Year (2001); BC Science Council Champion of the Year (2001); University of Alberta Distinguished Alumna; Nico Habermann Award; and honorary doctorates from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County; Acadia University; the University of British Columbia; Dalhousie University; Queen’s University; the University of Waterloo; and Ryerson University.