February 18, 2019


Kathleen R. McMorrow

The Communications Optic, LLC.

Phone: 973.665.8167

Email: [email protected]

Hg’s Cynthia Hetherington to give keynote at the 2018-2019 Aspirations in Computing Awards ceremony sponsored by the National Center for Women & Information Technology

Cynthia Hetherington, Hg’s founder and president, will inspire young high school women from across the country on February 19th at the 2018-19 Aspirations in Computing Awards ceremony hosted by CybHER at Dakota State University (DSU) in Madison, South Dakota. The National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) awards will be bestowed upon 35 high school women who are active and interested in computing and technology.

Ms. Hetherington’s keynote address, “Try to Grasp,” challenges young women to get active in the world and to try everything. “Young women are now the reality of the promises women before them fought so hard to obtain,” said Ms. Hetherington. “As much as I seek to inspire these intelligent, curious young awardees, I get inspiration from them, too. All I ask is that they try cybersecurity and new technologies and enjoy the role they play in this special field.  As they grow from youth and curiosity and mature in these roles, they will grasp the ring of success—an accumulation of wisdom and expertise. I’m proud to be working with CybHER, whose mission is to empower, motivate, and educate girls in cybersecurity.”

Dr. Pam Rowland and Dr. Ashley Podhradsky founded CybHER at Dakota State University (DSU) in 2013. From 2013 to 2017, DSU saw an overall increase of 296% of women enrolled in cyber programs in the Beacom College of Computer and Cyber Sciences. CybHER conducts activities at K-12 schools, science centers, and libraries and has reached over 10,000 girls and women. Each summer it hosts a GenCyber Girls in CybHER Security week-long camp for middle school girls where they explore all things cyber.

“We are pleased to have Cynthia Hetherington as our keynote this year,” said Dr. Pam Rowland, DSU assistant professor and director of CybHER Institute and GenCyber Girls Camp. “CybHER first met Cynthia at our Rocket Girls’ event at the Space Center in Florida last summer. The high school students that met her wanted more! Cynthia has a passion for cyber investigations that is contagious, and she is a wonderful role model to young women.”

“Such a strong commitment to encourage young women to enter the cybersecurity profession was unheard of a decade ago,” Ms. Hetherington noted, “but CybHER has made an incredible impact in the shifting of gender representation in such a traditionally male-oriented profession.”

“I can without a doubt say that Cynthia has been one of the most inspiring, hardworking, and motivated women I have ever met,” noted Kelley Criddle, a Florida CybHER Camp participant and 2018 OSMOSIS Conference attendee. “Cynthia had a genuine curiosity about what I wanted to do in my future and how I wanted to get there. She did nothing but encourage me to reach high for what I wanted in life and to not let anything stop me from reaching my goals. It did not take long for me to realize that Cynthia is an inspiration to many people, not only myself.”

Ceremony Details: February 19, 2019, 1:00PM-3:00PM CT
Location:  Beacom Collaboration Center, Dakota State University
Live Stream Link: