Last Wednesday we celebrated the third annual Pledge of the Computing Professional at Whitman College, with our first two computer science majors, three computer science minors, and an independent major.
The Pledge is a rite-of-passage ceremony for computer science students and others who intend a career in computing. Inspired by the Order of the Engineer, a pin and a certificate serve to remind alumni of their moral and ethical responsibility as a skilled professional.
This post shares some of the diversity of our students’ summer experiences—a very important part of a computer science student’s education. I’ve gathered short reflections from a few students and linked to the blogs of a few more. This first draft represents two summer research experiences (one at Whitman and one at a large research university) and two internships (one closely associated with Whitman and one not). Continue reading
It’s the first week of classes and time for an update on enrollments. In short, Whitman CS courses are enrolled at full capacity this fall. Continue reading
This was my second summer of participating in Whitman’s student-faculty summer research program. Below I share my stories of two projects that were quite different in their content and their material circumstances.
In what has become a tradition, I report on pre-registration for next semester. The highlights:
- Major declarations are off to a strong start.
- With the exception of Data Structures, our classes filled.
- Two courses have long waiting lists, and one of them needs a response.
In the last week, three different people have asked me what we are doing at Whitman to ensure women are included in the CS program. I guess that means it’s time to write a blog post.
I’ll address what we’re doing now, the effects we’re seeing, and what I think we will be doing in the future. Continue reading
Last week I traveled to Austin, Texas with seven students for the Richard Tapia Celebration of Diversity in Computing. My job was to moderate a panel on teaching-oriented faculty careers—my fifth such panel, but the first at Tapia. CS program funding allowed me to bring along several students. To maximize impact, I recruited from amongst this fall’s class mentors and the leadership of the CS@W student club. Students are expected to share or apply what they learn on campus.
Whitman students and faculty at the Tapia Celebration of Diversity in Computing. You can tell we are in Texas by the steer made of license plates on the wall behind us.
I’ll start out with a diary of my experience, and conclude with my students’ reflections on their experiences. Continue reading
In August, Whitman’s computer science faculty moved into three adjacent offices recently vacated by Technology Services. It so happens that there is a common space outside the offices, separate from the hallway. We were permitted to use funds left over from creating the two lab classrooms for minor renovations and furnishings.
I didn’t ask for a CS Commons, and I’m not entirely sure that we deserve it when so few other departments and programs at Whitman have space for students outside of classrooms. I’m very grateful nonetheless. This post will address the design of that space. Continue reading
I’ve heard colleagues describe April as “the month of a thousand nights” because of all the senior recitals, shows, celebrations, and so on. April is also the month of admitted student visits and fall pre-registration. Next year I need to account for all the time in April I’ll spend just talking with current and prospective students.