More U.P. women entering computer science fields

HOUGHTON — There was a time when grown–ups looked to kids to program the VCR. Today’s kids are programming computers. Here’s ABC 10’s Keweenaw Bureau Reporter Rick Allen.

Computer Science is one of the fastest growing fields and young women are finding they can have successful careers in it. High School girls visited the campus of Michigan Tech to learn some basic computing skills.

In one event, the students designed a virtual reality program then got to see their results in 3–D using an Oculus Rift headset.

Bessemer A.D Johnston High School 11th grader Rachel Emery said, “We had to, basically, come up with what we wanted to fill it in with a color and then design it how we wanted it to move. We had to put in a program to translate it. If you wanted it to move to the right, you could put in a certain code, if you want it to go to the left, you put in a different code.”

Other activities included driving a simulator, building a working heart monitor and programming a robot. The wide range of activities introduced what these girls could really do with computer science.

Michigan Tech Computer Science Major Nicole Yarroch said, “It’s a basic code and then I thought a lot of the girls picked it up very quickly and they had a lot of fun with it and if they spent more time on it, they could create a very complex scene.”
The event was put on by Michigan Tech’s Admissions Office, Computer Science Department and Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.