Bath students scoop awards at Lovelace Colloquium

Our undergraduate Computer Science students scooped a number of awards at the annual national BCSWomen Undergraduate Lovelace Colloquium held in Bath last week.

The event, which aims to increase female participation in computer sciences, attracted 110 undergraduate students from across the country to Bath for a day of lectures, competitions and inspirational key-note talks from successful women working in the sector.

Our undergraduate computer science students stole the show at this year's Lovelace event.

Our undergraduate computer science students stole the show at this year's Lovelace event.

During the day, students presented posters illustrating their research, with prizes given for the best in each year. Poster topics ranged from quantum computing through to iPad applications for editing UML diagrams.

We wish to congratulate first year student Laura Deeley who won the Google Excellence Award of £500 for her poster which addressed artificial intelligence in physical and emotional support for the elderly.

Congratulations also to second year student Eleanor Mitchell who picked up an award of £300 for the Best Open Choice poster, sponsored by Thoughtworks. Eleanor’s poster was titled ‘Quantum computing: what is achievable?’

Second year students Catherine De Roure and Sophie Drake were awarded second place in ‘Best Open Choice’ category for their joint poster, and final year student Zoe Benedict was awarded £200 and second place in the Bloomburg sponsored award for ‘Best Project Work’ for her research into the public perceptions of the profiles of Facebook users.

Final year student Zoe Benedict discusses her work with Professor Jane Millar, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research.

Final year student Zoe Benedict discusses her work with Professor Jane Millar, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research.

Finally, three of our students won travel bursaries allowing them to attend the acclaimed DevXS national student developer conference in Liverpool.

Student Catherine De Roure said: “Programming has become a necessity, technology is everywhere. It has so much potential and that in itself has me excited. Why would you not want to be a part of that?”

Professor Jane Millar, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research), attended the event. Professor Millar said: "The whole day was a resounding success, and congratulations must be given to our students who did so well.

"Lovelace is a forum in which all young women looking to go into computing careers are able to network and share their ideas, to learn about the opportunities available to them and to create working relationships with peers from across the country. It is a very positive event for the future of this fast-growing sector.”

Marlene Bertrand, Equalities and Diversity Manager at the University, said: "This national event gave our students an excellent opportunity to network with other young women and employers.  The speakers were excellent role models and were from a variety of academic backgrounds.  Their career/life stories gave the sort of advice that could lead to a good future in computing. This is another great example of work being undertaken in academic departments.  This University has a bronze award from the Athena SWAN women in science, engineering and technology project and we are delighted that the Computer Science department hosted such a successful event."

Professor Phil Willis, Head of the Department of Computer Science, said: "We have had some fantastic feedback from both our own students and from those who visited us from other Universities. Everybody appeared to thoroughly enjoy the day and find it a highly useful opportunity to explore the perspectives of women working in computing."

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