Rebecca Wright and Jennifer Rosales, et. al


On March 21, 2024, Jennifer Rosales, Vice President for Inclusion and Engaged Learning and Chief Diversity Officer, Elizabeth Melville, CEP graduate assistant, Melissa Wright, CEP executive director, Saima Akhtar, CSC senior associate director, and Rebecca Wright, CSC faculty director and Druckenmiller Professor of Computer Science, presented their new paper, titled “The Experience of Near-Peer Computing Mentors: Strengthening and Expanding Women’s Computing Identities in Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Contexts.” The paper is published in the Proceedings of the 55th Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education (SIGCSE 2024).

While previous research has examined the benefits of near-peer mentorship for mentees, the effect of these programs on mentors has not been studied as extensively. With this new project, which was funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded to Wright and Rosales in 2022, the researchers set out to close this gap. Their work focuses on how participation as a mentor in Barnard’s flagship Computing Fellows program has contributed to the strengthening and expansion of the mentors’ computing identity and engagement. The program assigns near-peer mentors to undergraduate courses across the sciences, social sciences, humanities, and the arts. The mentors support the integration of computing into courses through activities that include in-class workshops, drop-in office hours, and one-on-one consultations with students.