Skip to main content

Maia Johnson

Maia Johnson PhotoComputer Science Student and Women for STEM Award Recipient, Class of 2023

In high school, Maia Johnson excelled in the arts and in math – so when it came time to choose her undergrad program she opted for computer science. “I felt it would be cool to learn about coding, which I had never done before, and how to apply it to artistic fields. I was able to combine and excel in both my passions,” says Maia.  Ontario Tech was Maia’s first choice because its computer science program has a specialization in digital media.

When Maia was accepted to Ontario Tech she also qualified for the Women for STEM Scholarship program. Ontario Tech’s Women for STEM program was created in 2019 to close the gender gap in science, technology, engineering and math.  It is built on three pillars to engage and empower women in STEM: scholarships and bursaries, mentorship and networking opportunities, and celebrating and promoting the achievements of women throughout the university community and beyond. 

As a Women for STEM Award recipient, Maia credits the program for the support she needed to help avoid student debt and provide opportunities beyond the classroom. One of the ways the program does this is through its offering of events and workshops to Women for STEM Award Recipients throughout the academic year.  “As a recipient of the program I can meet and interact with other people who work in industry and who are interested in my field, which will continue to support me as I pursue a career in this industry, says Maia.”

Another important element of the Women for STEM program is its mentorship program. Students in the first year of the program are paired with an industry professional who they can connect with throughout the year. Mentors provide career advice and support to the students as well as insight into their chosen professions. Maia has built a good relationship with her mentor who provides insight into various choices available to Maia as she continues her career journey. Maia’s mentor is also an Ontario Tech alum so they are able to share stories about the university too!

As Maia looks to the future and her career as a women in STEM she believes she will be well prepared and the opportunities are endless! What would she say to all the girls and women out there thinking of pursuing a career in STEM? “Just go for it!”