Gina Fossati, Friendswood High School senior, is one of the recipients of the 2016 Houston Affiliate Award from the National Center for Women and Information Technology (NCWIT).
She was selected for her computing-related aspirations and has demonstrated an outstanding aptitude and interest in information technology/computing; solid leadership ability; excellent academic history; and plans for her post-secondary education. The NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing offers both national and local “affiliate” competitions to generate support and visibility for women’s participation in communities nationwide. She was nominated for this prestigious award by Annette Walter, her high school computer science teacher.
She was recognized at the award ceremony and banquet held at the University of Houston – Downtown with her fellow Houston area female recipients and Houston NCWIT representatives on Saturday, February 13. Her parents and computer science teacher were invited to attend the awards ceremony.
Gina has been an extraordinary student in her computer science courses. Her attention to detail, her analytical ability and problem solving skills make her a top student. She has been a high performer throughout her academic career, also excelling in a number of extracurricular and co-curricular activities. This passion is underpinned equally by her intellectual curiosity, as well as her keen desire to solve problems. She has always loved math and puzzles, especially solving the Rubik’s cube algorithm. When Gina took her first programming class in her freshman year, she knew that this was the career that she wanted to pursue in college. After excelling in the AP computer science class, in her junior year, she took an Independent Study Mentorship class where she learned to program Android applications (apps). In her senior year, she has continued to learn even more about Android apps as well as learning how to program an Arduino microprocessor.
Not only has Gina excelled in academics being in the top 4% of the senior class, she has been instrumental in getting the girl’s swim team to State in her four years with the varsity team. She is also on the Water Polo team and has been a member of the varsity cross country team. Gina is a member of the PALS (Peers Assistance and Leadership) organization which enables her to use her leadership skills by being a role model to make a difference in the lives of younger students. She recognizes that younger children look up to older students and that she has an innate capacity to nurture and build positive relationships.
Gina is planning on attending UT-Dallas and majoring in computer science. In addition, she will be trading in her swimsuit for a pair of running shoes in her collegiate years. She has signed with UTD to compete on their cross country team.
Annette Walter, FHS computer science teacher and Robotics coach, is her teacher.