For the Newcomer
If this is your first time attending GHC or it’s been awhile since you’ve attended, there will be a conference session just for you. “For the Newcomer” will take place on Wednesday, October 3rd at 6:30 PM (BCC:Hall E).
In addition, we’ve pulled together the resources below to help you get the most out of GHC.
- ABI Overview
- People to know
- What not to miss
- Survival tips
- Resources for planning your time at GHC
- Ways to keep the energy when you leave
The Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology (ABI) is the organization behind the Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC) conference. To learn more about ABI, watch this video.
In addition, here are a couple of videos on Dr. Anita Borg, our founder, introducing the Institute for Women and Technology and her Heinz Award speech.
So, who was Grace Hopper, for whom this conference is named? Here are a few videos to check out:
Last but not least, if you aren’t already excited about the conference, here is the I am a Technical Woman video to get you started!
People to know
Are you worried you’ll talk to someone important and not know who they are? Take a look at this list to familiarize yourself with some of the conference VIPs:
What not to miss
Looking for a job? Check out ABI’s job hunting resources. In addition, you may also want to take a look at our Job Book, in your conference bag, to learn more about our sponsors and the positions they seek to fill at GHC.
We get asked all the time about tips for networking. You can start making connections before the conference by participating in our online communities. But here are a few things to try while you are roaming the halls at Grace Hopper:
- Sit with people you don’t know at meals and make sure everyone at the table introduces themselves. It’s a great way to meet new people and sometimes people from your own company.
- Come to the Poster Session on Wednesday night and introduce yourself to the poster presenters. A great way to expand your network and learn something new at the same time.
- After a workshop or panel that you enjoy go up and introduce yourself to the speakers. They love to hear what you think of their topics.
- While you are waiting for the General Sessions to start, introduce yourself to the people around you.
- Don’t skip the fun stuff – be sure to attend the dancing after the Award Ceremony and RockIT Science Celebration on Friday. You might find yourself dancing with Turing Award winner Fran Allen!
- As hard as it is, put down that computer and mix and mingle. Or talk to the woman who is on her computer next to you.
- Stop by the Community Booth for help with our online communities or to learn how you can get more involved. Our community volunteers will show you more cool ways to network online.
- Use GHC Mobile App the latest in networking technology, to connect with people you meet.
- Don’t forget your business cards or resume – great way to stay in touch.
- Follow Up. Once you get home from GHC make sure to reconnect with your new contacts on your favorite social networking site or by email.
Here are some great tips on how to survive and make the best of the jam packed four days of Grace Hopper.
- No matter what you did the night before, attend the Keynote sessions. Get coffee, do morning yoga, go for a run, fight the jet lag with all your might but do not miss the keynotes.
- No matter what else is happening on a Friday night in Baltimore, nothing will be more fun than the RockIT Science and Systers 25th Anniversary Celebration! Be sure to bring your dancing shoes.
- The days at GHC can be a little long – be sure to get plenty of sleep and take advantage of all our meals. And be sure to use the water bottle provided in your bag and refill them frequently. Stay hydrated and save the environment.
More tips on how to navigate the conference and make it memorable.
- Find out who will be presenting. Pick a few people you want to meet and attend their presentations. Odds are you will have a chance to speak with them at the conference.
- Find out which companies will be at the conference. They are eager to talk to people here so make sure you ask questions about their technology, work environment, interview process, benefits etc.
- Be flexible in what sessions you attend. You may meet people in the course of the conference that take you down a different path in terms of sessions.
- Connect with women/men from other networks. This is the time to meet people outside your organization or university. Don’t forget to bring business cards with your information!
Overall, this is a time to learn something new, network, and enjoy!
Resources for planning your time at GHC
Ways to keep the energy when you leave
Hopefully you had an amazing conference experience – you met great new people, saw fascinating panels, and had a whole lot of fun. It can be overwhelming to go from a place where you are surrounded by many technical women and return to your daily routine. Maybe your school, company or city has many resources for technical women, or perhaps you are the first person in your area to become involved.
Keep It Simple
Building your community of technical women is not a race. Whether this is your first conference or your tenth, you can reach out to women in your area.
- Meet for coffee or lunch
- Organize a presentation to share your conference experience and learn what women in your area are studying.
- Learn a new language or skill, or make a goal to read about new progress in your field. It is great to stay up to date in case you enter the job market or decide to pursue a new business or academic opportunity.
- Join your university’s SWE, ACM-W, or women in computing group. These organizations are a great way to meet new people and create amazing friendships.
- Stay in touch with the friends you make at GHC.
- Attend a regional Grace Hopper Celebration.
- Join Systers or another ABI online community for technical women.
Whether you are alone or have many people to work with, there is a lot you can do in your community to keep your energy from GHC.
- Serve as a mentor to young women interested in technology. Many schools and community centers have after school programs to teach girls science and technology skills.
- Coordinate with a Girl Scout troop or science camp to teach a session about technology.