The thirteenth annual Canadian Celebration of Women in Computing Conference (CAN-CWiC) took place on October 20 – 21 in Toronto. Founded in 2010 as a collaboration between Queen’s Women in Computing and QSC instructor Wendy Powley, CAN-CWiC remains the premiere Canadian computing conference for young women and non-binary people in technology. With the support of our alumni, Queen’s School of Computing was able to sponsor a group of students to attend the conference for free.
The conference weekend consisted of a banquet, the traditional NCWIT Aspirations in Computing National Award ceremony, parallel speaker sessions, a Career Fair, panel sessions with leaders in industry and academia, and, of course, the key note addresses by this year’s special invited speakers.
One of the keynote speakers this year were Tanjulia Akter, Software Engineer & Engineering Manager at Electronic Arts (EA) and founder of Womxn In Engineering, a platform where students in the Tech industry can directly network with fellow students or industry leaders.
Tanjulia says in her keynote We did not come this far to only come this far, “Let’s dive deep into our perseverance, our collective efforts, and the vast tech landscape. We’ll celebrate our journey, acknowledging both where we’ve been and where we’re headed.”
Another keynote speaker was Christina Fung, Senior Vice President of Consulting Services in the CGI Toronto Banking group and Global Head of AI Enablement. Christina is a Queen’s Engineering alumna and throughout her career held various leadership positions in Canadian banks, global financial institutions and global software companies. Her keynote speech was focused on sharing the outlook of Generative AI.
The third keynote, titled A Woman in STEM: from Trials to Triumph was given by Keeton-Curtis Pauline, Managing Director of Portfolio Technical Support at Bank of Montreal. Pauline later commented that CAN-CWiC is “a great opportunity for our young Women to hear from those already in Computing roles, network and make connections.”
The event continues to grow each year, with over 650 attendees and over 30 organizations participating from all over Canada.