West Ottawa teacher recognized for promoting gender equity in computing

PARK TWP. — A local high college instructor has been identified by a nationwide organization for marketing gender equity in computing and technology. 

West Ottawa Large School’s Andy Hamilton was named a recipient of an Aspiring in Computing Educator Award by the National Heart for Females and Information and facts Technologies. He is 1 of 107 complete educators across 43 states, Washington D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam and Canada to gain the recognition. 

Hamilton, who teaches Superior Placement laptop science, AP laptop science principles, coding and programming in Python and physics, was awarded in the honorable point out group and is just one of two Michigan academics between the awardees.

The National Heart for Girls & Information Technological innovation is a non-income neighborhood operating to “increase the influential and meaningful participation” of girls and girls, alongside with other traditionally marginalized identities, in the subject of computing. 

The organization’s Aspirations in Computing Educator Award acknowledges these encouraging substantial school learners identifying as women, genderqueer or non-binary to discover fascination in computing and technological know-how.

The Aspirations in Computing Educator Award recognizes educators encouraging gender diversity in coding and computer science.

Hamilton was suitable for the award soon after nominating college student Charity Ihrman for a individual award. Ihrman finished up successful a Growing Star award from the NCWIT.

Techniques for encouraging far more assorted participation in coding at West Ottawa incorporated encouraging other team customers to propose learners get up computing and starting a chapter of the countrywide “Girls Who Code” club at the university.

“The greatest factor has been the Ladies Who Code club we commenced this 12 months to present space for people fascinated in coding,” Hamilton claimed. “I was hunting at our disappointing quantities for involvement for ladies and believed this would be a great method to get started at the significant faculty.”

Hamilton said the club has, at several situations, had all around 15 ladies take part. The hope is for the club to mature in the coming years and to display pupils that laptop science is for anyone, despite the subject staying predominantly white males.

West Ottawa's Girls Who Code club chapter aims to encourage more girls to take up an interest in computer science.

Hamilton mentioned that when gender gaps have closed in other STEM-connected fields, pc science proceeds to be a generally male subject.

“Computer science is 1 of the handful of destinations we have not produced any enhancements in phrases of the gender hole in participation,” he reported. “In math, science, engineering, ladies are attaining and shut to equal with boys. In pc science, we’re basically in a even worse position than we had been 50 a long time ago.”