Serita earned her bachelor’s degree from Lander University and a Master of Education in Human Resource and Development from Clemson University. Before becoming the PEER/WISE director in August 2015, Serita Acker was Director of the Women in Science and Engineering program. Additionally, she has more than 25 years of experience in higher education, both in the areas of student support services, mentoring, and diversity programs. She is a certified Global Career Development Facilitator and Academic Coach. Serita Acker sees the PEER/WISE main role as providing student success programs and services that can equip students with the resources they need to excel at Clemson University and achieve their educational goals so that they are prepared for success after graduation.
She has won several State and National Awards: Clemson University Woman of the Year, Martin Luther King Jr. Award, Clemson University Board of Trustee Award, WEPAN Distinguished Service Award, Career Communications College Level promotion of Education Award, Upstate Diversity Award Calder D. Elhmann Outstanding Individual. Serita was featured in Women of Color in STEM magazine, fall 2014 edition.
She also serves as MentorLinks Consultant for the American Association of Community Colleges in Washington DC and sits on many state and national boards to help promote STEM. In her spare time, she enjoys reading and traveling.
Pamela Silvers is a first-generation, non-traditional college graduate. After a divorce she completed both a bachelor’s and master’s degree – and has been giving back ever since. When Pamela began teaching at Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College (A-B Tech), she knew she had found her calling. Engaging students – particularly women – in computer technologies is not only a living, it is her passion. Since 1992 she has taught all aspects of computer technologies as an adjunct instructor, full-time instructor and department chairperson.
Currently, Pamela serves as the Principal Investigator for a National Science Foundation project entitled Skilled Workers Get Jobs 2.0: Appalachian Impact. In an initial grant, A-B Tech increased female enrollment in a grouping of STEM programs from 12 to 20 percent in two years while also increasing male enrollment. A-B Tech’s successful Picture Yourself campaign allows women of all ages to picture themselves in technology or engineering careers. Currently, A-B Tech is sharing its successful strategies with other colleges – with a focus on six colleges and their neighboring high schools in the Southern Appalachian region.
Pamela’s commitment to students and STEM can be found in her numerous presentations and awards. She has been recognized as the Faculty Member of the Year at her college and as an Innovator Educator by the local Chamber of Commerce.
Mercedes Adams is a member of the NetApp University leadership team, owning the Academic Alliances and Guiding Coalition programs.
With the Academic Alliances, Mercedes seeks to extend NetApp University’s broad data management and cloud technology education offerings to our communities globally through partnerships with colleges and universities, as well as organizations focused on serving veterans, women in technology, and minorities.
Mercedes also provides the backbone for NetApp’s employee-led innovation network, the Guiding Coalition. The Guiding Coalition launched 7 years ago to drive transformational change across the Go-To-Market organization through the efforts of employee change leaders. A second Guiding Coalition team was initiated 3 years ago inside the IT organization. Together, these programs seek to empower employees at all levels to unleash their passion to drive customer success, growth, and employee productivity.
Mercedes has been at NetApp 11.5 years supporting the World Wide Field and Customer Operations function as well as cross-company initiatives. She has been a part of Silicon Valley innovation for twenty years, previously at tech giants HP and Xerox PARC. Mercedes is passionate about engaging communities to drive change, volunteering with Every Voice Engaged Foundation to facilitate participatory budgeting to engage her community.
Ms. Nicholas is a marketing communications consultant and strategist at IBM, currently serving as a communications adviser to IBM’s cloud computing business division. She has 30 years’ experience in the IT industry and has held leadership roles in sales, marketing and employee communications.
In addition to her work at IBM, Ms. Nicholas served as a digital marketing consultant on an Advanced Technical Education project to advance STEM education and also served as a curriculum development consultant to help build the framework for a new social media curriculum – Social Technology Enabled Professional (STEP) – now being delivered in community colleges across the US.
She holds an MBA from the Isenberg School of Management, University of Massachusetts, Amherst and a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology from the Massachusetts College of the Liberal Arts. She is a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma National Marketing Honor Society and International Association of Business Communicators.
Beth Quinn is a research scientist at the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) at the University of Colorado at Boulder where she works on workplace and educational equity, pedagogical and curricular innovation, and processes of change within complex organizations. Beth is Director of Research for the NSF-funded EngageIT project which is testing new models of professional development (PD) for community college computing faculty. The goal of the PD is to empower faculty to use research-based means for retaining and recruiting women in their courses. Beth also directs NCWIT’s EngageCSEdu project, an online collection of peer-reviewed course materials for introductory CS courses that use research-based “Engagement Practices” to encourage inclusive computing education. Prior to joining NCWIT, Beth was Director of Research and Innovation at the award-winning Filament Games where she was PI/Co-PI on Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) projects of over $2 million. Beth has over 14 years of experience as a professor, including as an associate professor of Sociology and Justice Studies at Montana State University and as a visiting associate professor and visiting scholar at the University of Wisconsin’s School of Law, Department of Sociology, and Legal Studies Program. She received her Ph.D. and M.A. from the University of California-Irvine and her B.A. from Indiana University.
Celeste Carter is the Program Director for the Division of Undergraduate Education (DUE) at the National Science Foundation (NSF). She received her Ph.D. in Microbiology from the Pennsylvania State University School of Medicine in 1982 under the direction of Dr. Satvir S. Tevethia. She completed her postdoctoral studies in the laboratory of Dr. G. Steven Martin at the University of California at Berkeley. Carter joined the Division of Biological and Health Sciences at Foothill College in 1994 to develop and head a Biotechnology Program. She served as a Program Director twice in DUE as a rotator. Carter accepted a permanent Program Director position in DUE in 2009; she is the Lead Program Director for the Advanced Technological Education (ATE) Program, and works on other programs in the Division and across the Foundation. She served as the Education and Human Resources Liaison to the Division of Polar Programs from 2012 to 2014.
Since 2013 Dr. Andres Diaz is a Research Professor at Universidad Metropolitana in Puerto Rico, where he is the Deputy Director and Academic Coordinator of the Puerto Rico Photonics Institute and part of the Project Team of the New Horizons project funded by the US Dept. of Labor. He previously worked in industry for AT&T Global Business Solutions as Regional Account Director for the Caribbean and Latin America and as Assistant Professor and Researcher and Postdoctoral Scholar at the Department of Electrical Engineering of The Pennsylvania State University (State College, PA). He has over 12 years of experience in the area of photonics, with 37 refereed publications and 35 conference and presentations in nonlinear optical materials, liquid crystals, tunable devices, frequency selective surfaces, and metamaterials. Dr. Diaz has a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University (2004), M.S. Degrees in Electrical Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University (2002) and in Physics from Universidad Nacional de Colombia (1999), and B.S. Degrees in Electrical Engineering from Pontificia Universidad Javeriana (Bogota, Colombia, 1996) and in Physics from Universidad Nacional de Colombia (1995). His current research interests are in nonlinear optical metamaterials, subunity and negative refractive index, metamaterial-based nanophotonic devices, and laser cooling sensor applications.
Matt Glover is a technology executive with 26 years of industry experience. He is the CTO for Le-Vel, a mid-market health and wellness company in Frisco, Texas. He currently serves as Chairman of the Business Industry Leadership Team for the National Convergence Technology Center. He serves as a member of the White House CTO Round Table and is the Founder of GlobalCIO LLC. His non-profit organization is dedicated to sharing thought leadership with CIO’s around the world.
Mr. Glover was previously the CIO and CISO for AMX, a global hi-tech company. He served as Senior Vice President of Technology at Bank of America and has helped lead technology for industry giants like HP, Intuit, MetLife. He started his technology career on Fast Attack Submarines and served his country with distinction for nearly 10 years.