Helping women scientists take advantage of advanced research computing
Julie Faure-Lacroix receives an award from the Anita Borg Systers Pass It On Program for her training project for women in advanced research computing.
AnitaB.org, a nonprofit organization for the advancement of women in computing, rewards noteworthy contributions from all over the world through its Systers Pass It On Awards Program. Any woman over 18 who is or aspires to be in a computing field may apply to win up to US$1000 to help finance projects that promote and include women in technology, an environment predominantly made up of men.
This year’s winners include Julie Faure-Lacroix, a Scientific Liaison Officer with Calcul Québec since 2015, where she advocates advanced research computing and assists researchers in getting the most out of Compute Canada’s supercomputer infrastructure. There are however significantly fewer women than men who use high performance computing in their research work. However, according to Julie, “more and more research areas that were not traditionally using HPC have now adopted the technology, and several of these areas involve a majority of female researchers. These women are often highly specialized scientists in their field, but they don’t always have computer training and can be hesitant to get into it.”
Julie believes that change is possible and she wants women scientists to acquire these computing skills in environments free of gender stereotypes. “My goal is to put together a training program developed by women for women to learn together with other women.” The Systers Pass It On award will allow her to design the curriculum, train a team of trainers and deploy the program in Quebec universities. If successful, the program will be rolled out in other provinces.
While only 20 % of Quebec information and communications technology professionals are women, Julie wants to do away with the myth that men are better at computing than women. As described in the TECHNOCompétences’ report on the place of women in the IT sector in Québec, she explains that the male oriented culture is often to blame for the fact that women are not as involved in scientific computing. This is why they need an environment where nothing else matters but the need and will to learn about supercomputers.”
Calcul Québec congratulates Julie Faure-Lacroix for this Systers Pass It On award and supports her efforts toward ensuring gender inclusiveness in advanced research computing.
- Read the official announcement here.
AnitaB.org is a nonprofit social enterprise committed to increasing the representation of women technologists in the global workforce. AnitaB.org engages with tens of thousands of women and leading organizations around the world to build diverse and inclusive workplace cultures. Founded in 1997 by our namesake, computer science visionary Anita Borg, the organization works toward a future where the teams that create technology mirror the people and societies for whom they build it.
About Julie Faure-Lacroix
Julie Faure-Lacroix holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in biology from Laval University and is now pursuing a PhD. Her current projects include statistical models in R and geospatial analysis with ArcGIS. Since 2015, she is Scientific Liaison Officer with Calcul Québec where she advocates the use of supercomputers in research. Her goal is to ascertain the advanced computing needs of researchers and provide them with appropriate solutions. Julie Faure-Lacroix leads the Calcul Québec initiative to become a chapter of of Women in HPC.
Phone: (514) 343-6111 ext. 88924