Reflections from Grace Hopper Celebration

Last week I had the honor and privilege of speaking at the Grace Hopper Celebration. This year was my first year presenting, and first year attending. I emerged tired and inspired. My three key reflections are: 

  1. GHC stands for Grace Hopper Celebration. While GHC can be confused with a conference, the “C” stands for Celebration, not for Conference. The difference is importance since it really set the tone for a fun, celebratory atmosphere. Watching so many awards for various achievements was inspiring all by itself.
  2. Melinda Gates shared in her keynote that many paths lead into technology. In addition to the many paths into tech, we have many places to end up in tech. The breath and diversity of companies at the Career Fair was truly stunning. Everyone from Neiman Marcus and Macy’s to traditional tech like Microsoft, Apple, Google to emerging Twitch and some companies that are just starting out. Plus universities were recruiting these top minds. And most surprising to me where the stolid companies who are so heavily reliant on tech to perform their own digital transformation to be relevant in the 21st-century. The US Federal Reserve System and my beloved United States Navy. All these organizations are seeking these great, capable, technical experts to help their organizations move into the future. 
  3. The diversity of all this diversity proved that we as individuals do not succeed. When we succeed, it is always as a team. We succeed together. There’s room for all of us, various places for us to be 

In conclusion, I left the Grace Hopper Celebration with a renewed sense of pride in Microsoft and in my sisters in technology.