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Double Celebration for Computing Students

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As the computing world marks the 200th anniversary of its first computer programmer, British aristocrat Ada Lovelace, two University of Worcester students are having a celebration of their own.

Alex Radisa, from Kidderminster, who is in her second year, and Hannah Williams, from Kingswinford, a third year student, have each been awarded £100 from Worcester Association of Women Graduates (WAWG) through the Carol Pugh prize.

Carol Pugh was a President of WAWG and the prize in her name is now presented to the highest achieving undergraduate woman in mathematical-related studies. This is the first year that the award is shared.

Alex and Hannah were selected as outstanding in their Computer Studies course. Both intend to save their money to further their ambitions - Alex as an entrepreneur in web design and associated services, and Hannah, who also has two Academic Scholarships to her name, as a leader in social marketing.

Ada Lovelace was the daughter of the poet Lord Byron and was mathematically gifted from her teens. At the age of 17 she was introduced to Charles Babbage, who conceived the idea of a pro-grammable computer. Ada Lovelace then developed the first algorithm intended to be used on a machine.

WAWG is the local association of the British Federation of Women Graduates which oversees two Scholarship funds for women post-graduate students at British universities and is part of a global organisation promoting education for women.

Margaret Smeaton, a long-standing member, who presented the award on behalf of WAWG, said: “It is important that women and girls feel empowered to go forward and fulfil all their potential. It is a more equal world than ever before, but there are still challenges and we are proud to be able to play a small part in meeting those challenges.”

Peter Moody, Senior Lecturer in Computing at the University of Worcester, added: “I congratulate Alex and Hannah. We welcome external encouragement for all our students and are glad to be as-sociated with WAWG in this award for women.”