Women Tech Council Honors Two BYU Marriott Students

PROVO, Utah – Nov 12, 2018 – Two BYU Marriott School of Business information systems students were honored at the eleventh annual Women Tech Awards—a ceremony hosted by the Women Tech Council to recognize influential women throughout the technology sector. The students, Jerika Ostler and Haley Kirk, were two of three finalists for the Student Pathways Award.

Professors and academic advisors from universities throughout the state of Utah nominated female students in STEM programs who had exhibited dedication to their field and studies. The Women Tech Council then reviewed the nominations, narrowing the list of hundreds of candidates down to just three finalists. After conducting interviews and completing final evaluations, the award was given to Ostler at a luncheon held at the Grand America Hotel in Salt Lake City on 24 October.

“Receiving the Women Tech Council Student Pathways Award is a great honor,” says Ostler, a senior from Loa, Utah. “I am excited and grateful to be recognized as a woman who makes an impact on the lives of the women around me, particularly those who are considering pursuing a STEM degree. I truly want women to know that they can raise a family while making a difference as a professional.”

Ostler was nominated by a BYU Marriott professor who recognized her enthusiastic desire to make a difference in the world, including her outreach to undergraduate women. The Women Tech Council concluded that Ostler’s ongoing involvement and unique abilities distinguished her as a candidate.

“The finalists for the Student Pathways Award are some of the most talented women in STEM programs across the state,” says Cydni Tetro, president of Women Tech Council. “Being named an award recipient is a testament to Jerika’s academic dedication, positive impact in the tech community, and the promising career she is beginning in technology.”

While at BYU Marriott, Ostler has been involved with the Women in Business Club, where she currently serves as a mentor to female students. This experience has given her many opportunities to inspire women to work hard and believe in themselves. Ostler also cites her education as a major influence in helping her qualify for and ultimately receive the award.

“The information systems program at BYU Marriott is rigorous and is always being adjusted to help students be cutting-edge,” Ostler says. “The professors continually do an excellent job at setting their students up for success.”

Kirk, a first year-year MISM student from Marina, California, also states that BYU Marriott prepared her for this recognition. She insists that the information systems program has helped her push past her limits to go above and beyond what is expected.

“I didn't have any experience with technology or coding until my sophomore year,” Kirk says. “This nomination has shown me that with hard work, anything is truly possible. It is also a great reminder that BYU Marriott students really can make a difference in their respective fields and throughout the world.”

Further evidence of BYU’s influence came when the Women Tech Council honored Jacqueline White, who is a BYU alumni and member of the BYU Marriott National Advisory Council. White received the Trailblazer Award for her remarkable innovation, leadership, and mentoring in the tech sector.

“By highlighting and promoting top talent in technology, these awards amplify the impact of women across the technology industry and accelerate the growth of the entire sector,” Tetro says. “This platform also brings together the technology community to build dialogue and spur meaningful action towards creating solutions to increase the number of women in tech.”

Student Pathways Award Finalists
BYU Marriott information systems students Haley Kirk (left) and Jerika Ostler (center) were named as finalists for the 2018 Women Tech Council Student Pathways Award. The award was ultimately given to Ostler at the eleventh annual Women Tech Awards, which was held in Salt Lake City on October 24.
Jerika Ostler
BYU Marriott information systems student Jerika Ostler received the 2018 Women Tech Council Student Pathways Award for her dedication to her field and studies, including her involvement with the Women in Business Club.
Haley Kirk
BYU Marriott information systems student Haley Kirk was named as one of three finalists for the 2018 Women Tech Council Student Pathways Award. Hundreds of Utah women in STEM majors were nominated for the award.

Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Brendan Gwynn