Inclusion and Diversity News

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Annual IST summit celebrates diversity and authenticity in tech

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) hosted its third annual Be You in Tech Summit on February 7 at the Eric J. Barron Innovation Hub in State College.

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IST faculty and staff recognized at annual awards ceremony

IST faculty and staff recognized at annual awards ceremony

The Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology recognized faculty and staff at its annual awards ceremony on Dec. 14, 2023.  

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Order of the Sword and Shield National Honor Society installs Penn State chapter

Order of the Sword and Shield National Honor Society installs Penn State chapter

The College of Information Sciences and Technology inducted 20 students into the new Penn State chapter of the Order of the Sword and Shield National Honor Society.

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Renaissance Fund honors Barbara and Edgar Farmer, raises funds for scholarships

Renaissance Fund honors Barbara and Edgar Farmer, raises funds for scholarships

Penn State’s 47th annual Renaissance Fund celebration on Nov. 1 honored local community leaders and education pioneers Barbara and Edgar Farmer. The event hosted more than 300 attendees and helped to raise $193,364 for endowed scholarships to benefit students with financial need.

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Liberal Arts, IST student scores sports technology internship with Miami Dolphins

Liberal Arts, IST student scores sports technology internship with Miami Dolphins

Azziyah LaRue, a fourth-year student double majoring in sociology and security and risk analysis with a minor in information sciences and technology, interned with the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium this past summer.

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IST promotes STEM to thousands at National Girl Scout Convention

IST promotes STEM to thousands at National Girl Scout Convention

The Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology hosted a STEM activity booth at the 56th triennial National Girl Scout Convention at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, last month. 

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College of IST student interns share experiences, offer internship advice

College of IST student interns share experiences, offer internship advice

Four students from the Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology shared their summer internship experiences. All undergraduate students in the college are required to complete at least one internship before graduation. 

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Renaissance Fund selects Edgar and Barbara Farmer as 2023 honorees

Renaissance Fund selects Edgar and Barbara Farmer as 2023 honorees

As Penn State’s Renaissance Fund celebrates its 47th year of recognizing outstanding community members and helping students in need, the Renaissance Fund Committee has selected local community leaders and education pioneers Edgar and Barbara Farmer as its 2023 honorees.

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Lynette Yarger named full-time associate dean in Schreyer Honors College

Lynette Yarger named full-time associate dean in Schreyer Honors College

Penn State’s Schreyer Honors College has promoted Lynette Yarger to full-time associate dean for equity and inclusion as of July 1. Prior to that date, the professor of information sciences and technology had filled the role on a part-time basis. 

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Penn State hosts Nigerian delegation to discuss partnership

Penn State hosts Nigerian delegation to discuss partnership

A delegation led by the former president of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and His Royal Majesty Saka Adelola Matemilola, the Paramount Ruler of Owu Kingdom in Nigeria, visited Penn State on May 23-24 to explore opportunities for long term and impactful partnership between Penn State and a cons

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College of IST announces Office of Enrollment, Engagement and Belonging

College of IST announces Office of Enrollment, Engagement and Belonging

The Office of Enrollment, Engagement and Belonging is the new name of a collaborative unit in the Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology. The new unit includes three offices: inclusion and diversity engagement, undergraduate recruiting and student engagement.  

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Alumnus Scott Robertson receives College of IST’s highest honor

Alumnus Scott Robertson receives College of IST’s highest honor

Scott Michael Robertson, an alumnus of the College of Information Sciences and Technology at Penn State, was selected as the 2022 recipient of the IST Outstanding Alumni Award, the highest honor bestowed by the college upon its graduates.  

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Forty graduate students recognized with prestigious University awards

Forty graduate students recognized with prestigious University awards

Forty Penn State graduate students were named recipients of Penn State’s most prestigious annual graduate student awards, administered by the Graduate School in collaboration with several Penn State units.

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Commitment to technology, public service set IST alum up for success

Commitment to technology, public service set IST alum up for success

As a full-time database consulting engineer, an independent financial adviser, and a commissioner in his local community, College of IST alumnus Fred Faylona relies on his Penn State experience to succeed professionally and make a difference in his community.

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5 student startups win funding in Inc.U Competition

5 student startups win funding in Inc.U Competition

Student startup Bindr, a dating app that provides a safe space online for bisexual individuals, won $15,000, the largest prize amount, in the 2023 Invent Penn State Inc.U Competition.

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IST’s 'Be You in Tech' Summit celebrates diversity, encourages empowerment

IST’s 'Be You in Tech' Summit celebrates diversity, encourages empowerment

The College of Information Sciences and Technology recently partnered with RMS US LLP to present the 2023 Be You in Tech Summit.

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IST Career Spotlight: Megan Tucker flies ahead with Boeing

IST Career Spotlight: Megan Tucker flies ahead with Boeing

As an IT business partner for Boeing, Megan Tucker is the focal point for one of the company’s new defense helicopter programs. She works between the program and the enterprise to ensure all IT requirements are met and communicated.

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Information Sciences and Technology faculty, staff recognized with annual awards

Information Sciences and Technology faculty, staff recognized with annual awards

Faculty and staff in the College of Information Sciences and Technology were recognized at the college’s annual awards event this week. Recipients were nominated by their IST colleagues and selected by a review committee for their excellence in teaching, research and service.

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IST Career Spotlight: Heather VanGorder maps Pepsi’s path

IST Career Spotlight: Heather VanGorder maps Pepsi’s path

Heather VanGorder, who earned a bachelor’s degree in information sciences and technology in 2020, currently works as an IT analyst at PepsiCo Inc. Her team is responsible for setting up the mapping that gets PepsiCo products to their final destinations. 

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College of IST welcomes two new members to Dean’s Advisory Board

The College of Information Sciences and Technology recently welcomed two new members to its Dean’s Advisory Board: Andy Duffett, senior vice president, Global Revenue Operations at CrowdStrike, and Corey Lee, enterprise security executive for U.S. Education at Microsoft Corporation. 

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Mentors help first-generation IST alum find the right path

Mentors help first-generation IST alum find the right path

Joel Gill Jr. has established himself in a tech consulting career and has learned from a variety of experiences and mentors.

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Arts and Architecture’s fall student marshal is first ever from World Campus

Arts and Architecture’s fall student marshal is first ever from World Campus

Carly Mojica, from Colorado Springs, is the first-ever Penn State World Campus student to serve as student marshal for the College of Arts and Architecture's commencement ceremony. 

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Real-world internship helps IST student make a meaningful impact

Real-world internship helps IST student make a meaningful impact

Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology senior Djante McLaughlin is bringing his knowledge and passion for cybersecurity to life through his leadership with the IST Student Government and his work with the Department of Homeland Security.

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Erica Mi named College of IST student marshal for fall 2022

Erica Mi named College of IST student marshal for fall 2022

The Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology will honor Schreyer Honors Scholar Erica Mi as student marshal at its fall 2022 commencement, which will be held Saturday, Dec. 17. 

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On the Bridge — December 2022

On the Bridge — December 2022

A compilation of recent news, highlights, and achievements from the College of Information Sciences and Technology community.

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NSF grant to help reimagine first-year experiences through diverse lens

NSF grant to help reimagine first-year experiences through diverse lens

A Penn State research team aims to meet the unique needs of increasingly diverse student bodies by reimagining first-year learning experiences in technology-related degree programs at U.S. universities, thanks to a new $296,804 grant from the National Science Foundation.  

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New coding tool could aid computer programmers who are blind or have low vision

New coding tool could aid computer programmers who are blind or have low vision

A new tool could help make code reading, navigating and editing more accessible and efficient for blind and low-vision computer programmers, according to Penn State researchers.

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IST students celebrate women in tech at annual Grace Hopper conference

IST students celebrate women in tech at annual Grace Hopper conference

Six Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology students attended the annual Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing in Orlando, Florida, in late September to learn, network and celebrate the contributions women have made in the technology industry.

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IST Identity Talks series presents ‘Paving the Way for Change’ on Oct. 19

IST Identity Talks series presents ‘Paving the Way for Change’ on Oct. 19

Members of the Penn State community are invited to join the College of Information Sciences and Technology for “IST Identity Talks — Paving the Way for Change,” to be held virtually from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 19.

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Strong community support drives success for IST student marshal

Strong community support drives success for IST student marshal

When James Reese represents the College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) as student marshal at the summer commencement ceremony this month, it will be, in part, thanks to members of the IST community who believed in him.

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Heard on Campus: Alumni share diverse perspectives in IST Identity Talks series

Heard on Campus: Alumni share diverse perspectives in IST Identity Talks series

More than 40 Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology alumni from underrepresented backgrounds have participated in IST Identity Talks panel conversations, where they shared their unique perspectives and experiences of navigating the significant diversity gap that exists in the t

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26-year-old IST student to earn second doctorate this spring

26-year-old IST student to earn second doctorate this spring

This weekend, as thousands of Penn Staters earn their degrees, one 26-year-old graduate of the College of Information Sciences and Technology will be presented with not her first, but second, doctorate.

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Penn State student-developed app aims to redefine Black motherhood

Penn State student-developed app aims to redefine Black motherhood

A group of Penn State students is working to support a global initiative to redefine Black motherhood. Blending interdisciplinary expertise from across the University, the students are building a mobile health application designed to support the mental and physical health of Black moms.

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Women in IST’s Wiki edit-a-thon aim to narrow the platform’s gender gap

Women in IST’s Wiki edit-a-thon aim to narrow the platform’s gender gap

A group of eight students in the College of Information Sciences and Technology recently set out to narrow this gender gap on the world’s fifth most popular website by hosting a Wiki edit-a-thon to increase visibility for one of the college’s most prominent female faculty members.

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Alumni Achievement Award recipient Noel Claudio inspires IST students

Alumni Achievement Award recipient Noel Claudio inspires IST students

Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology graduate Noel Claudio was one of 11 prominent young Penn State alumni recognized at the Alumni Achievement Awards Ceremony on March 18.

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Tech designed to aid visually impaired could benefit from human-AI collaboration

Tech designed to aid visually impaired could benefit from human-AI collaboration

Remote sighted assistance technology — which connects visually impaired individuals with human agents through a live video call on their smartphones — helps people with low or no vision navigate tasks that require sight.

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College of IST names Garraway assistant dean of diversity, equity and inclusion

College of IST names Garraway assistant dean of diversity, equity and inclusion

The Penn State College of Information Sciences and Technology has named Jocelyn Bennett Garraway assistant dean of diversity, equity and inclusion. Holding three degrees from the University, Bennett Garraway has more than 30 years of experience as a counselor, educator and administrator.

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IST Identity Talks series presents ‘Strength in Diversity’ on April 5

IST Identity Talks series presents ‘Strength in Diversity’ on April 5

Members of the Penn State community are invited to join the College of Information Sciences and Technology for “IST Identity Talks – Strength in Diversity,” to be held virtually from 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 5.

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IST Identity Talks series Feb. 28 presents ‘Women in Tech’

IST Identity Talks series Feb. 28 presents ‘Women in Tech’

Members of the Penn State community are invited to join alumni of the College of Information Sciences and Technology for "IST Alumni Identity Talks – Women in Tech," to be held virtually from 6 to 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 28.

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IST Identity Talks series Feb. 8 presents, ‘Celebrating Black History’

Members of the Penn State community are invited to join alumni of the College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) for "IST Alumni Identity Talks – Celebrating Black History," to be held virtually from 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 8.

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Happy Valley LaunchBox supports company serving underrepresented students

Happy Valley LaunchBox supports company serving underrepresented students

With help from Happy Valley LaunchBox powered by PNC Bank, Joel Sakyi founded Vybrnt, a startup that provides underrepresented students better access to resources and opportunities that help them succeed during their time at college.

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IST Alumni Identity Talks series, 'Military and Veterans in Tech,’ on Nov. 17

Members of the Penn State community are invited to join the College of Information Sciences and Technology for IST Alumni Identity Talks – Military and Veterans in Tech, to be held virtually from noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov.

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New IST scholarship honors friendships formed at Penn State

New IST scholarship honors friendships formed at Penn State

Two College of Information Sciences and Technology alumni recently came together to establish a scholarship in memory of their friend and fellow classmate, Jimmy Lee Brown, who died in 2019.

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Alumna-led nonprofit aims to empower female emergency dispatchers

Alumna-led nonprofit aims to empower female emergency dispatchers

Nearly a quarter of emergency dispatch personnel experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, and the national turnover rate of 911 dispatchers is more than 17%.

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IST Alumni Identity Talks series Sept. 15, 'Celebrating Hispanic Heritage'

Members of the Penn State community are invited to join alumni of the College of Information Sciences and Technology for IST Alumni Identity Talks — Celebrating Hispanic Heritage, to be held virtually from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 15.

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IST alumnus and Latinx workers in tech advocate lands dream job at Twitter

IST alumnus and Latinx workers in tech advocate lands dream job at Twitter

Growing up in Philadelphia, Noel Claudio never thought that it was possible to work for a big social media tech company unless he lived in California or New York.

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Overcoming homelessness and hardships to earn a Penn State degree

Overcoming homelessness and hardships to earn a Penn State degree

On his 18th birthday, Joel Seidel became emancipated from his parents and, in turn, homeless. He said Penn State equipped him with the tools and resources he needed to succeed, including support from scholarships.

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Alumni sisters experience IST 10 years apart, advocate for diversity in tech

Alumni sisters experience IST 10 years apart, advocate for diversity in tech

Many alumni can say that the Penn State legacy runs in their family, but few can say that they graduated from the same college as their sibling.

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Study of police language aims to find patterns that may lead to tragic outcomes

Study of police language aims to find patterns that may lead to tragic outcomes

With a new grant from the National Institutes of Health, an interdisciplinary team of researchers aims to examine police radio communications to observe what happens during adverse encounters between police officers and male minority youth and study any patterns of interaction that may lead to un

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