In honor of Black History month, ColorStack awarded their Family Fund Scholarship last week. This $750 scholarship was designed to support and empower ColorStack members in their academic journeys by removing obstacles that might stand in their way.
The Family Fund Scholarship was awarded to Hebron Mekuria, a junior majoring in computer Science and computer engineering at Eastern Mennonite University in Virginia. In her application, Hebron expressed her passion for computer science, and entrepreneurship. As a student from Ethiopia, she’s especially interested in how these fields intersect with the representation of immigrant communities. To this end, she recently pitched and received funding for a project related to publishing children’s books in underrepresented African languages from countries like Ethiopia, Nigeria, Kenya, and Uganda among others.
She sees the computer science major as something that goes hand in hand with her career aspirations. “I think it’s really important to identify that problem, to think creatively about how to solve it, to think about the most concise way of solving it––the most resourceful way––and what better way to learn that than comp sci,” she says.
While Hebron pursues her degrees in CS and Engineering with strong conviction, she mentions that she hasn’t always felt at home in these disciplines. “I started out with engineering and all of my engineering classes, every single one, are fully white and fully male,” she says. “So I struggled, especially in my first two years in college, to see how I have a place in the department.” She describes organizations like ColorStack, Code Path, and Rewriting the Code, as instrumental in helping her find that sense of belonging. “There are people like me in tech. I belong in tech.”
When asked about what she’ll use the scholarship for, she holds up her laptop and laughs, “I would want to purchase a laptop that’s not at risk of combusting soon.”
ColorStack congratulates Hebron on her outstanding achievements in the field of computer science and the Family Fund Scholarship. We encourage members to keep an eye out for more helpful resources from ColorStack.