The Seidenberg School of CSIS hosted the IBMCyberDay4Girls event on March 28 on Pace University’s Westchester campus. Over 100 middle school female-identifying students attended the event and were introduced to the world of technology and cybersecurity.
According to IBM, the IBMCyberDay4Girls events began in 2016 and have been held in the United States, Canada, Australia, South Africa, and Nigeria. The events bring cybersecurity awareness to seventh and eighth-grade girls. IBM sponsors hundreds of events like these each year.
At the event, attendees learned about careers in tech through conversations with IBM professionals. They also learned about college life and STEM majors thanks to a panel of talented Pace students, including computer science majors Ashleigh Brown and Shayna Rosado. And last but not least, the girls had an opportunity to tour our beautiful campus!
Seidenberg Sophomore student, Ashleigh Brown, explained that she “jumped at the opportunity” to be on a panel at the event. The Computer Science major explains how she got involved.
“One of my friends from Setters Leadership remembered that I am a part of Seidenberg. Over spring break, she sent a screenshot of her conversation with Alexa Dalbis, who was helping with the event. They needed volunteers who would talk to the girls, so I … emailed Alexa for more information,” Ashleigh explained.
Ashleigh noted that while on the panel, she and the other speakers covered several subjects regarding higher education within the world of technology.
“We talked about life on campus, applying for college, and opportunities in the field of technology,” she explained. “Some of the girls asked some really good questions, such as what you needed to include on your high school resume, residential life, and what skills you learn in computer science overall.”
The discussion gave the young women the change to learn about technology and higher education. Ashleigh noted that the events and panels scheduled for the young students “were educational and helped broaden their knowledge of cybersecurity.”
Getting young women into the field of technology is a step in the right direction, according to Ashleigh.
“There are many young girls who I’m sure are interested in cybersecurity, but most schools either aren’t going into depth about the field, or they don’t introduce the field at all. These girls are luckier than I am to have learned about this field, and computer science in general, at this age,” Ashleigh explained. “Also, because technology is evolving almost on a daily basis, there are new ways being invented for achieving identity theft online. It’s important to know how to protect your personal information, and I truly feel they learned a lot about that from this event.”
The middle school female students left with introductory knowledge of computer science and cybersecurity, but the real goal of the event was to encourage those students to enter the field of technology when they reach college.
Ashleigh expressed her gratitude, stating: “I really appreciate IBM taking time out of their schedule to put this event together and send representatives to Pace, especially since it is such a well-known company. I also applaud Pace for hosting the event and helping to inform young women about the field.”
We want to give a big thanks to Pace University alumni, Alexa Piccoli, and John Guckian, for bringing this event to the Seidenberg community.