ChicTech (pronounced "sheek-tek") is a grass-roots initiative to generate interest in computer science among Illinois high school girls. It is a collaborative effort between the department, UIUC alumni, and the volunteers in ChicTech as well as a joint endeavor between UIUC and other colleges within the state of Illinois.
The all-volunteer ChicTech team travels to Illinois high schools explaining and demystifying the field. They give girls a glimpse of life as a student in CS and explore the exciting and challenging career options open to graduates. Their presentation also confronts stereotypes of the male-dominated field-debunking myths, citing success stories and sharing personal experiences. The presentation is designed to resonate with the younger girls, sparking their interest and moving them toward further exploration. The presentations also promote monthly Tech Junket workshops, ChicTech Retreat Weekend and other Outreach initiatives.
ChicTech has received support from the National Science Foundation and several companies.
|When I went to the ChicTech Retreat, the women in Computer Science were so tight-knit and enthusiastic and supportive that it made me think, "When I go to college, I definitely want to be part of a group like this." -- Yuzuko Nakamura, 2006 ChicTech participant, junior in CS
For a preview of what a ChicTech visit and presentation is like, view the presentation below.