AiC High School Award
The roles and responsibilities for the Aspirations and Educator Awards are often linked together and most of the coordinator's duties for each award such as: outreach, selection of local winners/honorable mentions, notification of award recipients, and event planning are done together. This is due to the fact that only educators who have an endorsed a student's application for the Aspirations in Computing Award are eligible to apply for the NCWIT Educator Award. That's why we encourage any outreach to be done simultaneously. Find out more about outreach for the NCWIT Educator Award here.
2020-21 Important Dates
September 1, 2020 |
November 5, 2020 |
Application DEADLINE at 11:59PM ET
November 12, 2020 |
Educator Endorsement and Parental Approval DUE
Nov. 13-Dec. 11, 2020 |
HS Application Reviews
January 11, 2021 |
National Award Recipients Notified by NCWIT
February 12, 2021 |
Affiliate Award Selections Finalized
February 19, 2021 |
All Award Recipients Notified by NCWIT
AiC Award Responsibilities and Roles
Outreach and Promotion
One of the biggest challenges an Affiliate faces is getting the word about the Aspirations in Computing Award and getting students in grades 9 -12 to apply.
What YOU can do:
Reach out in your region and find volunteers to help spread the word and encourage those in their community to apply.
Teachers, school administrators, counselors, local non-profits are all great resources to help conduct outreach.
Share NCWIT Resources and the 2020-21 Sharing Package with your networks
Encouraging past recipients to apply again (if eligible) and reach out to their friends
Tap into groups like CSTA (Computer Science Teachers Association) as part of your outreach strategy.
NCWIT will be sending centralized communication outreach, look at the dates in this calendar to ensure there isn’t overlap (i.e. not sending the same message to the same contacts in the same week)
Ready-to use messaging
Not sure how to message some of your outreach? Use the Email Templates located on your Coordinator Dashboard to conduct outreach!
When in doubt, use the sharing package!
Questions? Reach out to your RAM!
Selection and Notification
You may wish to recruit volunteers from your local business and academic community to serve on a selection committee, with anywhere from two to five or more committee members. These volunteers will review the applications from your region and select the winners and runners up for your award.
Potential reviewers can be employees of sponsoring corporations, professors, graduate and undergraduate computing/engineering students, and other professionals.
Qualifications: For the HS Award, one does not need to be a technical professional to review, though it is helpful.
Reviewers may not be: parents of applicants or teachers/school officials of applicants.
Please note that it will be up to the affiliate coordinator to distribute copies of the applications to all committee members, as some may not have full access to the coordinator portal. READ MORE
The Award levels for 2020-21 include:
National Awards (selected centrally by NCWIT)
Winner: Highest achieving students selected to represent the rich diversity of applicants. Prior National Winners may not win this award more than once. 40 National Winners are selected annually. National Winners will be selected and notified at the beginning of January 2021.
National Winners receive an individual trophy, swag, and their name will be placed on a school trophy along with other recipients from their school. Please note that at Affiliate Award Events, National Winners will only receive the school trophy and NCWIT swag. They are recognized at the National Award Event in March 2021 in Charlotte, NC where they receive their individual trophies and prizes from Bank of America.
Honorable Mention: High achieving students selected to represent the rich diversity of applicants. 360 recipients are selected annually as National Honorable Mentions. National HMs will be selected and notified by early January 2021.
National Honorable Mentions receive an individual trophy, swag, and their name will be on a school trophy along with other recipients from their school. All will be distributed at the Affiliate Award Event.
Certificate of Distinction (CoD): Students who merit recognition and entry into the AiC Community. CoDs are selected by NCWIT after Affiliates make their selections for local awards.
CoDs receive a certificate and swag, both of which are sent from NCWIT straight to their homes.
Affiliate Awards (selected by YOU!)
All Affiliate Award recipients should be selected and shared with RAMs no later than February 12, 2021.
Affiliate Winner: Students who have significantly demonstrated interest and aptitude for computing.
Affiliate Winners receive an individual trophy, swag, and their name will be on a school trophy along with other recipients from their school.
Affiliate Honorable Mention: Students who have demonstrated interest and aptitude for computing.
Affiliate Honorable Mentions receive an individual trophy, swag, and their name will be on a school trophy along with other recipients from their school.
Affiliate Rising Star: Students who may be starting out in their pursuit and study of computing. Rising Stars embody the idea of aspirations and are encouraged to continue their exploration of the field.
Rising Stars receive a certificate and swag.
Planning your Event
Who to recognize:
It is strongly encouraged to allow Educator Award Recipients to speak at the award ceremony, and to encourage all educators who have endorsed an application to attend the event.
If there are Collegiate Award Finalists in your Affiliate, we highly recommend you invite them to speak or participate in a panel. They are inspirational speakers with great advice to share with high schoolers.
NCWIT will send you trophies/certificates and swag to distribute to all award recipients at your event or outside of your event if you a virtual event is held instead of an in-person event.
Please note that this will involve your timely review of the trophy proofs to ensure accuracy before production (at least 1 month is required to process your trophy order and ship).
Learn more about planning your event.
- The Event:
- Please note that for the 2020-21 Award Season, NCWIT recommends that all Affiliates proceed with a plan for a virtual event, at the very least as a back-up to an in-person event.
- Reach out to your RAM if you have any questions about arranging a virtual event or if you need assistance setting up a Zoom event.
The NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing is sponsored by Apple, Bank of America, Microsoft, and Motorola Solutions Foundation.