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Student Awarded For Her Outstanding Work in Computing

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A University of Worcester student has been awarded a prize in recognition of her outstanding work.

Liane Gillespie-Akar has received the Carol Pugh prize from the British Federation of Women Graduates Worcestershire Association (BFWG Worcestershire) for her achievements so far in her Mathematics and Computing degree.

Carol Pugh was a President of BFWG Worcestershire and the prize in her name is now presented to the University of Worcester’s highest achieving first year undergraduate woman in computer or mathematics-related studies.

Receiving the £200 prize, Liane, a former pupil at Christopher Whitehead Language College, said: “I feel encouraged to carry on and I do feel very proud of myself considering I hadn’t done Computing before. Working hard has paid off.

“It does mean a lot to me. I’m very much in favour of encouraging more women to get into sciences and computing and I feel that I can be an example to help in this.”

The 20-year-old, from Grimley, near Worcester, hopes for a career in the programming or gaming industry after graduating.

Dr Joanne Kuzma, Head of Computing, said: “This is a wonderful time for women to be in computing but it is not a recent development. Women have been in computing since before the days of computers.

“Think of Ada Lovelace in the 1840s and 1850s. She was really one of the first programmers before there were machines to programme.

“We need more women in computing. It’s nice to see we have somebody in this field. There are all kinds of things that Liane and her fellow students are going to be at the centre of and can make a big difference to.”

Margaret Smeaton, a long-standing member, who presented the award on behalf of BFWG Worcestershire, said: “I hope the prize will encourage her to pursue her ambitions. We wish her well in her further studies.”