Over the summer the Department of Computer Science ran their summer intern programme for the second year. As in many Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths & Medicine (STEMM) disciplines, women are under-represented in Computer Science. In order to encourage women undergraduates to consider research careers in computing, the successful 3rd year students are each offered a twelve week internship within the department’s research groups.
Professor Greg Michaelson who runs the initiative said “This year, we were delighted to host nine interns from across Scottish Universities’ Computer Science programmes, including three from Heriot-Watt University.” The interns all worked alongside established research teams, conducting projects that contribute directly to their team’s wider activities.
The programme fits in well with the MACS Athena Swan Award application and action plan aimed at, among other things, encouraging more women into STEMM disciplines.
Laura White was one of this year’s interns: “I feel lucky to have experienced such an insightful internship at this point in my degree (being only in my second year of a four year course). I definitely found it more challenging than my previous university assignments but in the long run it was a lot more rewarding.
"It will also make me really stand out to employers when I'm looking for an internship next summer in a business environment, as my particular internship project had strong links in industry”.
The summer internships are supported by SFC funding via the Scottish Informatics and Computer Science Alliance (SICSA).