Students Honored in Computer Contest
Loy Norrix Student Wins Double Honors
Loy Norrix High School junior Anna Puca received double honors in the National Center for Women & Information Computing’s 2019 Aspirations in Computing competition.
Puca, who also attends the Kalamazoo Area Math and Science Center, received an honorable mention in the national competition and was named a finalist for the state award.
There were more than 4,300 applications for this year’s honors.
Students must answer essay questions about technology, including their future goals and how they relate to technology and how they volunteer to advance the understanding of technology. Teachers must provide recommendations for the awards.
Puca hopes to major in computer science and to become a software engineer who develops mobile apps.
She takes computer science at KAMSC, where she is a member of the computer science team. She also participates in the online computer programming competition CyberPatriot, in which teams solve cyber security problems.
Puca said she is also on the KAMSC research team working with a mentor at Western Michigan University to develop a mobile app that will help those with visual impairments sense objects around them that they can’t feel when they use canes for mobility.
Several other KPS students qualified for NCWIT awards:
Kayleigh Kostrzewa, a Kalamazoo Central junior, was named a state finalist.
Lesly Mares-Castro, a Kalamazoo Central sophomore, received a state honorable mention.
Puca, Kostrzewa, and Mares Castro have been invited to the state awards ceremony in Grand Rapids. Puca and Kostrzewa were state honorable mentions last year.
Four other students were recognized as Rising Stars in the state of Michigan: Loy Norrix sophomores Princess-J’Maria Mboup and Emerson Wesselhoff and Kalamazoo Central sophomores Freya Kailing and Stephanie Nizzardini.
Find the full list of national award winners and honorable mentions at www.aspirations.org.