CEMC Workshop in Computer Science for Young Women

At the end of Grade 10, I was given the opportunity to attend the CEMC Workshop in Computer Science for Young Women at the University of Calgary with fifty other girls from across Canada. This weeklong seminar was created by the Centre for Education in Mathematics and Computing (CEMC) from the University of Waterloo to provide girls with an opportunity to experience computer science in a university environment. The seminar explored the many facets of computer science through lectures, demonstrations, and programming and hardware labs.

During this seminar, I experienced life in a dorm far away from home for the first time by myself, shared everything with everyone and made many new friends that I am still in contact with today. While attending university-like courses, I experienced the difference between high school and university life.

However, I was not in the classroom all the time, but also experienced many social activities. One day a trip to Banff was planned, where the majority of the time was spent shopping and exploring the town. In the evening, I was transported up Sulphur Mountain in a gondola to have dinner in an elegant restaurant at the top of the mountain. It was the best meal ever. An all-you-can-eat buffet extended endlessly with delicacies such as shrimp cocktails and miniature cakes in flavours and styles that I have never heard of before. The fun didn’t end there – many bonding activities transpired on-campus as well.

The Kinesiology Department had a rock climbing wall which was opened up for a night for us to tryout. I had never rock climbed before and was very nervous. At first, it was impossible for me to get up the wall, but after persistently trying, and finding an easier sloped wall, I finally managed to get near the top.

My trip to the University of Calgary was the first time I had been on any university campus. I enjoyed looking at the beautiful architecture of the different buildings. Running from class to class through the labyrinth of the campus was tiring, but it was interesting how one could travel either outside or through the underground tunnels.