When Marissa Bush was in high school she did an internship in computer science and felt like it was something she wanted to do.
Now the recent Morgan State University graduate is starting a job with Google in July and will eventually move to California once the COVID-19 pandemic calms down. Bush was selected as the Circle of Excellence Scholarship winner by the members of the 2020 Circle of Excellence class.
She said that while computer science has long been a male-dominated field, she’s seen it starting to change the past few years.
“I’ve seen a lot more women coming into the computer science program,” Bush said. “You’re seeing more women on a daily basis.”
After her freshman year at Morgan, Bush did an internship at Facebook. She then interned two years with Google, which helped her land her job as a Site Reliability Engineer after graduation. She’s seen what two large technology companies are trying to do in terms of increasing diversity in the field.
“I do see a larger presence,” she said. “I give them props for that.”
She said each summer Google holds its GWE (Google Women Enginers) Summit for the company’s female interns. She’s also attended the Grace Hopper Celebration, billed as the world’s largest gathering of women in technology. She said there were about 40,000 participants when she attended.
She said that programs like that and The Daily Record’s Top 100 Women awards are critical for celebrating and honoring women.
“It’s important to highlight those amazing women,” she said. “It makes you realize we’re doing the same amount of amazing work that guys are doing.”
Bush is excited that because of the paths women have pursued and cleared she’s able to go into a field like computer science.
She’s been a peer mentor in the past and was also in the President’s Circle at Morgan. That group served as global ambassadors on behalf of the president’s office. She attended conferences with other university leaders and at foreign embassies in Washington. The group would also hold events on campus for other students.
While Bush isn’t sure right now if she’s going to continue her education in the future, she does have a plan for her career in the next few years. After working with Google in California, she hopes to move to New York with the company. But she eventually wants to settle in Austin, Texas, which is becoming a center for tech growth.