The movement to get more women into science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) careers took a significant step forward today with the announcement from PKA Technologies of the first Technology Higher Education Achievement (THEA) Scholarships. PKA Technologies, the WBENC-certified, woman-owned, New York-based IT solutions company awarded three female students scholarships ranging from $500 to $1,500 in its quest to balance the gender scales in STEM-related fields. PKA co-founder and CEO Felise Katz named the THEA Scholarship in memory of her mother, Thea.
Erika Tan, a recent graduate of Freehold High School in New Jersey, will attend the University of Texas at Austin to study computer science. She received a $500 scholarship. Mariia Kerimova, a computer science major at Bergen Community College in Paramus, New Jersey, received a $1,000 scholarship and Anisha Shin, a sophomore studying computer engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey, received a $1,500 scholarship.
The THEA Scholarship is awarded in three categories: high school, community college, and a four-year college/university. Tan, Kerimova, and Shin were selected from 23 applicants based on their GPA, passion for technology, leadership qualities, and the persuasiveness of a 500-word essay.
THEA Scholarships will be awarded annually. Katz funded this inaugural round of scholarships with a personal contribution. PKA plans to grow the scholarship fund donations in the coming years – allowing the company to increase the award amounts and the number of female recipients.