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Julia Austin

The VMware Experience at the Grace Hopper Celebration

October 29, 2012
A group of women from VMware recently attended the Grace Hopper Celebration in Baltimore.  This is an important event that brings together technical women for several days to discuss technology trends, get career support and learn from thought leaders.  While I was not able to attend this year’s event, I had a chance to catch up with some of those who did and want to share their direct feedback and experiences:

“This was my second time attending the GHC and it was as energizing as the first time! It is an amazing feeling to be surrounded by so many accomplished women each with a unique story.  I was lucky to be included in a session led by Rebecca Shambaugh, author of  “It’s Not a Glass Ceiling It’s a Sticky Floor”. The session really gave me a different perspective.  The exchange with the other women attending the session gave me lots to think about how we each have found different ways to balance our lives and not give up on our careers goals. I really encourage whoever attends to be open to sharing your experiences and listen to others’ stories. You might be surprised how much more you will get out of the conference beyond just technical information.”

- Silvia, Senior Director QE (R&D)

“I have been spending some of my time working on ways to attract more women to VMware R&D and there were many eye-opening moments for me at this year’s Grace Hopper Celebration. I got a much greater appreciation for the young women who are eager to learn from women in the industry, and what an impact these conversations can have on the lives of women everywhere — especially in countries where there are few women in science. Most importantly, I learned what a profound impact these connections can have on women already established in the industry.”

Sharing career perspectives.

– Karyn, Program Manager R&D

“I could not have been more proud to be a member of the VMware team that traveled to Baltimore for the Grace Hopper Celebration this year. From a University Recruiting perspective, one of the great benefits related to attending the conference is the opportunity to engage with students from top-notch Computer Science and Engineering programs that we don’t always have a chance to visit frequently during recruitment seasons.  Being able to meet students from different schools, allows us to discover innovative programs for new partnerships in the future. If you attended the Grace Hopper event this year and are interested in VMware’s career opportunities, I encourage to apply to either our New College Graduate or Intern positions here. We’re interested in learning more about you and your interests, especially if we did not have a chance to catch up in Baltimore one-on-one. Finally, if you missed us this year, you’ll know where to find us next fall…Minneapolis, here we come!”

– Alicia, University Relations
This year, I attended my second Grace Hopper Conference and was, once again, blown away by the sheer energy and scope of the conference. This year, sessions included everything from “Lessons Learned” for fresh graduates, to “Tips & Tricks” for working professionals in the industry (between 3-7 years) and more senior management and technical tracks. There was a particularly big focus on Security and Innovation this year with speakers such as Vivek Wadhwa, Meg Layton and Michelle Guel. It was of particular interest to several of us developers that the SANS Institute’s annual conference was right next door – too bad I didn’t bring my little sniffer with me – heh, heh. We made sure to encrypt *everything* we possibly could.  For me, GHC was a treasure trove of great female and male role models – how often do you get a chance to meet, shake hands with and even go out to dinner with such giants of the industry?!  And I came away with a huge list of contacts, knowledge and connections that span the globe and industries – connections that triggered ideas and concepts in my information-packed brain.
– Rupa, Member of Technical Staff

VMware interns enjoying the event.

Each of the ladies who participated clearly had equally strong yet unique experiences.  VMware also had the pleasure of sending four of our student interns to the conference and sponsoring two scholarships for other students to attend.  These women were nominated by their managers to represent VMware.  Check out what one of these lucky women had to say about her experience at GHC here.

I am so impressed with the Anita Borg Institute for not only putting on this program, but for all they do to foster strength and leadership in women technologists.  This conference is a wealth of information and networking opportunities so critical for the continued path towards balancing genders in our industry. I encourage anyone interested to attend the 2013 event!

Did you attend GHC?  I would love to hear your impressions on this event!
Julia Austin

Julia Austin

VP Innovation

Julia was the VP of Innovation at VMware and focused on advancing VMware into new technology and product areas. This includes internal programs to foster and fund new innovations and the VMware Academic Program (VMAP) which sponsors collaborative research and thought leadership with academic partners ... More

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