Angela Zavaleta-Bernuy

Angela Zavaleta-Bernuy
Graduate Computer Science Student at the University of Toronto

When I got into university, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do. I loved math, so I thought, why not? I chose UTSC because it had co-op and I was aware that experience was necessary.

After my first year, I fell in love with programming, so now I knew I found a passion other than math. I did a Specialist in Software Engineering co-op and a Major in Mathematics. If you are a girl in CMS like me, you probably know there aren't many of us around, at least after second year. I met a lot of great people and classmates who helped and supported me.

As a woman, I did have to face some weird looks or comments that would assume I was not enough to be in the program, or that because I was a girl, I was not going to be as smart as my other classmates. At first, these kinds of situations made me uncomfortable and led me to believe they might have been right. Well, I was wrong. You can’t let stereotypes define you, you are you and if you are where you are it’s because of you, your intelligence and your constant effort to succeed. Being a woman in CMS can be tough sometimes, but we are there for each other.

I’m glad I was part of the WiCSM community where I met other girls in the field that had the same goals and struggles as me, and we all supported and motivated each other to grow as professionals. I don’t think I would have accomplished what I have if I did not have their support. I am pursuing a Masters in Computer Science program at UofT, focusing on Computer Science Education and Human-Computer Interaction research.