Brown CS News

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The Artemis Project, an outreach program designed to encourage your women from local public schools to pursue careers in computer science, received an award from the Google RISE Program. Artemis is a five-week summer program in which its participants - female rising ninth graders - are exposed to the breadth of applications of computer science and are introduced to a variety of the technologies underlying computing. The learning process includes a range of both educational and confidence-building activities. Participants attend lectures from women scientists and other potential role models from both academia and industry. Artemis is provided at no cost to the participants, who come from predominately low-income, minority households. Brown undergraduates Tess Avitabile, Adrienne Cohen, Nell Elliott, and Lu Zeng will serve as coordinators for Artemis 2009 under the supervision of Amy Greenwald and Anna Lysyanskaya. Artemis was mentioned in a New York Times article on initiatives to increase the number of women in the field of computer science.

Bootstrap, a curriculum for middle-school students that teaches them programming through images and animations, also received an award from the Google RISE Program. Bootstrap uses algebra as the vehicle for creating this imaginative content, resulting in much greater student engagement in subsequent math classes. Historically, Bootstrap attendees have been predominantly minority and economically disadvantaged, with about a quarter female. Shriram Krishnamurthi is responsible for the Bootstrap effort at Brown and for the management of this RISE award. The Bootstrap team also includes Matthias Felleisen at Northeastern, Kathi Fisler at WPI, and Emmanuel Schanzer at Harvard. Bootstrap was selected by Google as one of the three projects highlighted in the RISE website. As part of their support for Bootstrap, Google has also provided several Android phones.

Established this year, the Google Roots in Science and Engineering (RISE) Awards are designed to fund, promote and support science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) and computer science education. Out of over one-hundred proposals, only thirty were funded in the inaugural edition of this program.