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Student Success

Computer Science students report back from the 2023 Grace Hopper Celebration

Miami CEC students secured interviews, received job offers, and found community at this year's Grace Hopper Celebration.

Student Success

Computer Science students report back from the 2023 Grace Hopper Celebration

A video recap from Day 1 of the 2023 Grace Hopper Conference. 18 Miami CEC students attended the conference this year.

The Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC), an annual event produced by, is the world's largest gathering of women and non-binary technologists. This September, 18 computing students from Miami University CEC had the opportunity to attend the 2023 GHC in Orlando, Florida in a trip sponsored by Miami University’s Center for Career Exploration and Success, the CEC Women’s Advisory Committee, and Nationwide Insurance. This year's cohort was chosen through an application process, and the trip was organized through the leadership of Karen Davis, Ph.D., professor of Computer Science and Software Engineering.

Attendees at this year's event, titled "The Way Forward," hosted headlining speakers like Janelle Monáe, Quiana Berry, and Kimberly Bryant (to name a few), providing valuable and unique insights to attendees.

Miami CEC student attendees at this year’s 2023 Grace Hopper Celebration in Orlando, Florida.

One of the biggest benefits of coming to GHC, according to attendees, is its incredible career fair. Miami Computer Science major Rachel Fishmar called the GHC career fair "a little overwhelming at first." But, "even though I was nervous, I gained confidence the more people I talked to." Isabel Pulte, another Computer Science major at Miami, also found success at the GHC career fair. "I got to meet with a lot of really awesome companies that normally I wouldn't have the opportunity to meet and network with," said Isabel. "I now have multiple interviews lined up!”

What types of companies were featured at the career fair? "I got an interview with United Airlines, and I got an offer from them," said Rachel Fischmar, who also has an employment offer from the financial company she interned for as an undergraduate at Miami. Isabel Pulte also came away from the conference with remarkable career momentum. "I'm about to go into my third round interview with John Deere," said Isabel. "That's a company I normally would not have met. I feel like if I submitted my resume to them through their normal applicant portal, I probably wouldn't have gotten as far as I did. But just having an opportunity to meet with these recruiters in person, I was able to get my foot in the door. And now that I'm in there, I've been able to move along in the interview process."

Championing women in computing

Through networking skills from Miami career fairs, having internships, and talking to professors, "I feel like Miami made me really well prepared for this conference," said Rachel Fischmar, left, with fellow Miami University CEC students at GHC 2023.The Grace Hopper Celebration is "meant to celebrate underrepresented communities" in computing, said Rachel Fischmar. "There's this statistic that for every class of 25 software engineers, there's only three women." But, says Rachel, she feels a shift is coming. "Women are really breaking into the industry and proving that we can do the same thing as men. We're competent, we can succeed and thrive." 

To encourage other women to join them in the computer science field, both Rachel and Isabel have taken leadership roles in similarly focused student organizations at Miami. Rachel has served as Vice President of Girls Who Code and is on the Association of Computing Machinery-Women (ACM-W) executive board. Isabel is also on the executive board of ACM-W, the academic chair for Theta Tau, and Vice President of Kode2Learn. Increasing the number of women in the computing field is a passion project for both these students. "Sometimes I joke that I think I'm more passionate about women in computing than computing itself," said Isabel. "It is one of my favorite things to talk about."

You can learn more about Miami CEC students' experience at GHC 2023 in this presentation created by attendees.