Making the Right Connections to Close the Gender Gap | Information Center

Kim Schjang brings her expertise gained by UNLV to St. Louis, Missouri – at least temporarily – to help build one of the fastest networks in the world.

The Associate Network Engineer has been selected for the Women in IT Networking (WINS) program, joining other leading female technologists in the United States to work alongside engineering experts to set up SC21’s temporary network. , an international conference on high performance computing. SCinet provides high-speed internet connection to thousands of attendees, researchers and exhibitors during the conference week, November 14-19.

A winning connection

“WINS provides much-needed exposure for women in technology,” said Schjang, who worked for three years for the network development and engineering team at the Office of Information Technology (ILO). UNLV. “Women are underserved in information technology, especially network engineering, and WINS is helping close the gender gap. “

According to the American Association of University Women, women make up only 28% of the workforce in science, technology, engineering, and math. Since its inception in 2015, WINS has supported over 30 women academics and research informatics professionals with mentorship and hands-on experience in building SCinet from scratch, encouraging more women to attend SC conferences.

“Kim’s strong background in networking, her desire to learn new technologies, and her dedication to ensuring successful network implementations make her an ideal candidate for the WINS program,” said Lorita Chesler, associate director for the WINS program. network development and engineering. “I am proud that Kim has without hesitation taken on this new challenge and will represent UNLV at the supercomputer conference. “

At the edge of the connection

Composed of nearly 200 volunteers, 15 teams, ranging from electricity to logistics to the assistance service, will build and operate SCinet. Schjang’s background earned him a place on the Edge Network team, which supports network connectivity for conference facilities and events.

“Being handpicked to participate in a program as innovative as WINS has opened my mind to a lot of things,” said Schjang. “I have worked hard to get to where I am today, and this opportunity lets me know that I can use what I learned at UNLV and apply my skills elsewhere, on a much larger scale. “

Schjang will be traveling to St. Louis two weeks before SC21 to install the network cable and maintain it throughout the conference.

SC21 celebrates the impact of supercomputing on the global community, from vaccine development to the design of autonomous vehicles, with world-renowned scientists, engineers and technologists focusing on the latest research and emerging technologies.

A connection with the campus

“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” said Schjang. “Internet connectivity has become more and more important, especially over the past year, and connecting with industry leaders can only help us. “

While other network projects are on the horizon at UNLV, Schjang, who led the project that brought Houssels House to the Internet in the 1930s, is delighted to share her SCinet experience. with the network development and engineering team.

“By sharing what I have learned from industry experts with my colleagues, we will be able to build an even stronger network for the campus community.”

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