Undergrad student, Karen Potts, presents at the 6th International Conference eKNOW, in Barcelona, Spain.

My Experience Traveling to Barcelona, Spain

When I offered to help out Professor Hazel Asuncion with some research projects, back in Spring 2012, the first quarter of my CSSE career, little did I know that I was signing up for more than an interesting way to understand software engineering. I also received a fantastic opportunity to present our team’s research in Barcelona, Spain. The conference was a conglomerate of computer scientists from all over the world. At my dinner table, I sat next to people from Brazil, Iran, Armenia, Saudi Arabia, and Sweden. It was an honor to present at the eKnow 2014 conference. Our research paper and presentation won an invitation to submit an extended article version to one of the IARIA Journals. Only five papers were given this award.

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March 26th, 2014 - Karen Potts presents Uncovering File Relationships using Association Mining and Topic Modeling at the Sixth International Conference on Information, Process and Knowledge Management (eKNOW 2014), in Barcelona, Spain.

My trip to Barcelona was extremely enriching because I also experienced the culture of Spain. Barcelona has beautiful architecture. Antoni Gaudi is their most famous architect and I was able to view many of his buildings including his most famous building Sagrada Familia. The food in Barcelona is delicious and focuses on seafood, paella, and tapas.

According to the US Department of Labor and Statistics, 17.6 percent of undergraduate degrees in Computer and Information Science in 2010-11 were earned by women. In the workforce, 25% of professional computing occupations in the United States were held by women. As a female with a Computer Science and Software Engineering (CSSE) major, I realize that I represent a minority of women who choose computing as an undergraduate degree. I feel that this conference experience helped the University by promoting diversity in the program. I also gave my presentation at the UW Bothell Undergraduate Research Symposium and displayed a poster of my travel pictures and experience at the Student Academic Enhancement Fund (SAEF) poster event. Hopefully this information will encourage other women to choose CSSE as a degree option.

I am very grateful to SAEF and the National Science Foundation* for allowing me this amazing opportunity. It was an experience that I will remember for the rest of my life.

* Note: This work is based in part upon work supported by the US National Science Foundation under Grant No. CCF 1218266.

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