Partyka receives Outstanding Senior award

Kirsten Partyka has been awarded the MSU Senior Class Council Outstanding Senior Award. Outstanding Senior Awards are presented to seniors who have exemplified both personal and academic achievement at Michigan State University. These students have demonstrated their dedication to Michigan State through their leadership and involvement on campus and in the community. Partyka was nominated for the honor by Professor Betty H. C. Cheng.

Kirsten Partyka

As a founding member of the MSU Women in Computing (WIC) student group, Kirsten has been an active and engaged advocate for women in computing careers. She has served on the WIC executive board as both Webmaster and Vice President. Partyka has frequently dedicated her time and technical skills to promote the group and its mission. In the past year alone, she has done so at MSU Science, Engineering and Technology day, WIC Girl Scout outreach workshops, and the College of Engineering alumni tailgate. She has spoken at the CSE Freshman Seminar course and helped to coordinate events for all students interested in computing. She planned and presented material at a Linux Workshop that was offered to all the students in the Computer Science department.

An enthusiastic student who is highly engaged in her field, Kirsten attended the Ohio Celebration of Women in Computing conference in 2005. She was selected to attend Google’s Women in Engineering Workshop on the basis of her outstanding academic record and commitment to community service. Partyka is an Honors College member and has participated in the IBM Speed Teams internship program. While pursuing her degree, she has worked as a technical editor for an online journal, a Web designer for a local business, and a Web programmer for the Eli Broad College of Business.

Kirsten served on the planning committee for the 2006 Michigan Celebration of Women in Computing, a regional conference designed to address the alarming decline of women choosing computer science as a profession. As Webmaster for the conference Web site, Kirsten played a critical role. She designed and created the Web site during fall semester 2006 and managed to balance the enormous responsibility of maintaining the site while simultaneously excelling in her academic career. The graphics she designed for the site are currently used on almost all promotional materials for the conference. She spent many long hours learning new software, building a conference registration application, and updating the site – all on a volunteer basis.

Partyka was awarded the MSU Society of Women Engineers Outstanding Senior Award in 2008 for outstanding leadership, community involvement, and academic achievement. She received a College of Engineering Service Award in 2007 for exemplary service to the MSU community. She will graduate with honors May 4, 2008.

(Date Posted: 2008-04-29)