PCF scholars are talented and motivated local students who are the first generation in their families to attend college, who have a demonstrated record of giving back to their communities or families, and who may be overlooked by other scholarship programs.
PCF Scholar Spotlight
Vanessa Tostado, Wesleyan University
Vanessa Tostado is a current PCF scholar who is a junior at Wesleyan University in Connecticut, where she is studying Computer Science.
Here’s how the process is working for Vanessa:
1. Describe your undergraduate career. What have you accomplished so far? What are you most proud of?
“One of the best experiences I’ve had this year was attending the Grace Hopper Conference (GHC) in Orlando. The GHC celebrates woman in computer science by bringing everyone together to share our experiences. During my time at the conference I met inspiring women, heard success stories, networked and realized the importance of having mentors in your life. I had to do a lot of work to get the best out of the conference. I practiced my elevator pitch, updated my resume, and made sure I had my PCF business cards with me. I am really proud of myself for landing 2 interviews and an offer from the conference! I hope to be able to return to the conference in 2018!”
2. Recent Internships?
“This past summer I had the opportunity to intern at the Environmental Defense Fund where I was researching Blockchain technology, carbon markets and supply chain initiatives. Specifically, I was doing data analytics and trying to figure out whether or not block chain technology can solve the double counting problem in carbon markets. I learned so much about impact technology can have on environmental initiatives. As a computer science major, my time at EDF made me realize that there is a need for technology in so many industries. As I finish my final years of college, I want to take these experiences with me and find a job that fulfils my desire to make an impact with the use of technology.”
3. What have you gained from being a PCF scholar?
“One of the components of PCF that I value the most is the events held every year dedicated to helping us grow as students and professionals. These events are filled with useful knowledge, opportunities to network and the ability to get closer as a PCF family. During this past college and career success weekend we were taken to VISA. During my time there I spoke to many employees and learned so much about Visa’s projects and company culture. Because of this positive experience, I applied for an internship and accepted an offer for this summer! I will be working as a software engineer for VISA.”