Internet2 Inclusivity Scholarship Recipients Reflect on Their Experience at 2023 Technology Exchange

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By Gail Krovitz - Senior Program Manager

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

Internet2 welcomed six emerging women professionals in information technology (IT) to its recent Technology Exchange conference in Minneapolis as recipients of the Internet2 Inclusivity (I2I) Scholarship. As part of the I2I Initiative, the I2I Scholarship supports emerging women in IT by sponsoring their attendance at an annual Internet2 event and providing them with opportunities for professional growth in the research and education (R&E) community.

“We were excited to welcome each of these remarkable women to the TechEX 2023 event, and we look forward to their continued participation in the community,” said Mike Erickson, associate vice president of Community Engagement at Internet2. “They didn’t just attend the event; they added their voices to critical conversations, bringing their diverse perspectives and experiences to the table and creating a richer experience for all in attendance.” 

We are excited to announce that the I2I Scholarship application process is now open for attendance at the 2024 Internet2 Community Exchange being held March 4-7 in Chicago, IL.

The deadline to apply or nominate an individual is Friday, Dec. 8, 2023, by 5pm PT.

But don’t just take our word for it! Here are the highlights of what this year’s scholarship recipients had to say about the I2I experience and attending their first Internet2 conference.

I2I Recipient Reflections

Shweta Chauhan

“Meeting five other remarkable women like me, all scholarship recipients, fostered an immediate sense of camaraderie and understanding. These newfound friendships were not only meaningful but also empowering, reminding me of the strength that arises when diverse voices come together. The I2I Scholarship enabled me to attend the conference and served as a beacon of encouragement, reinforcing the belief that my presence and contributions are valued in the IT field.”

– Shweta Chauhan, Faculty Support Specialist, San Diego State University

Emily Kasbohm

“The 2023 Internet2 Technology Exchange program represented multiple firsts for me: My first trip to Minneapolis, my first interaction with Internet2, and my first in-person professional conference. A true highlight of the Technology Exchange was having the opportunity to connect with others in the field, whether Internet2 staff members, the mentors with whom we had breakfast and lunch, or my fellow scholarship recipients. Everyone had great advice to offer, and I was amazed by how closely the insights from other women in the field aligned with my own observations.”

– Emily Kasbohm, Senior Web Developer, Brown University

Becca Kingery

“I learned far more than I expected and was able to participate in a tabletop exercise and thought-provoking conversations with individuals from across the globe. After this recent experience, I’ve created an intention to continue to attend both Community Exchange and Technology Exchange in the future. I look forward to seeing everyone again in March at the next Community Exchange!”

– Becca Kingery, Education IT Manager, Nebraska Office of the CIO and Network Nebraska

Ayat Mohammed

“TechEX provided me with a platform to engage with the latest advancements in advanced networking, cloud technology, identity and access management, and information security. It was a unique opportunity to connect with like-minded professionals, industry experts, and enthusiasts. Meeting professionals from diverse backgrounds and exchanging ideas and experiences was incredibly stimulating.”

– Ayat Mohammed, Computational Scientist in Advanced Research Computing, Virginia Tech

Jessica Krause

“I enjoyed attending a wide variety of sessions in different tracks, as I found this to be valuable for learning and growing in areas that I’m not as involved in during my day-to-day tasks. This gave me the opportunity to gather valuable information that will benefit not only my own work but also the work of my colleagues. Aside from the wealth of information, I found one of the most valuable aspects of the conference to be the sense of community. We can often feel siloed within our institutions, offices, or specific teams. The conference really brought together a larger sense of community across the country and even a few other countries across the world. I look forward to continuing to be a part of the community.”

– Jessica Krause, IT Reporting Analyst, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Veronica Ramirez

“The Internet2 conference was a rewarding and enriching experience for me as an I2I awardee. I had the opportunity to meet and get to know more of the Internet2 community, including the current and previous I2I awardees, the Internet2 staff, and the mentors. This was my first conference, and I felt less intimidated thanks to the bond I formed with this year’s awardees. The Internet2 staff and the mentors were welcoming and helpful, and I enjoyed learning about their career paths and advice.”

– Veronica Ramirez, Vulnerability and Risk Analyst, Chapman University

The I2I Scholarships for the 2023 Technology Exchange were made possible through the generosity of industry sponsors Cisco, Oracle, and Rincon, Internet2 community members Northern Tier Network Consortium (NTNC) and Chapman University, as well as Internet2.

More in 2024!

We are pleased to continue the I2I Scholarship program, supporting the attendance of early-career women IT professionals from our community at annual Internet2 events.

The scholarship provides funding for each recipient’s conference registration, lodging, and travel costs. Recipients will have access to the full conference program and have the opportunity to engage with community mentors as well as meet technology professionals from across the R&E community. More information can be found on the I2I Scholarship Award page and applications/nominations can be submitted using this Application and Nomination Form.