When Diamond Bar High senior Chiara Harsojo stepped into her computer science class on the first day of school there were 25 pairs of eyes looking back at her.
She quickly noticed that only three of the classmates were girls.
Harsojo, 17, was “baffled” and eventually decided to pursue the concept of breaking down gender barriers that exist in STEM fields.
She plans to address the stigma by transforming data to prove that “just because I’m a girl doesn’t lesson my abilities and potential.”
On Friday, Harsojo was recognized as a 2022 Edison Scholar for the innovative plan and will receive a $40,000 scholarship from Edison International.
She plans to attend UC Berkeley next fall and study Data Science.
While interning at Boeing aerospace company last summer, she created a web browser that can simplify thousands of data entries and show trends in safety information.
“By making data usable and easily understandable, I can help improve daily routines, find flaws in certain systems, and help businesses improve their products,” she said.
And most importantly, Harsojo hopes her work will give other girls the confidence to pursue a career in STEM.
An elite group of 30 high school seniors in Southern California Edison’s service territory received a total of $1.2 million through the Edison Scholars Program this year.
Each Edison Scholar will receive a scholarship, paid over four years, to further their academic pursuit of STEM fields – science, technology, engineering, or math studies – at a four-year accredited U.S. college or university.