Weaver student wins national IT award
Feb 25, 2013 (News & Record - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
As a little girl, Melanie Llanos used to watch her dad fix computers. Now, the senior at Weaver Academy is making her own mark in the world of technology.
Llanos, the daughter of Antonio Llanos and Ruth Barajas of Greensboro, was recently named a national winner for the National Center for Women and Information Technology Award for Aspirations in Computing.
Llanos attends Weaver and N.C. A&T as part of the Early College Academies of Education, Engineering and Health Sciences at Dudley High.
Encouraged by her business/information technology instructor Deb Ramey, Llanos said she entered the NCWIT competition as a way to spread the word about her talents, capabilities and achievements and show how she has used these skills in life and her community.
"There are trendsetters everywhere not being recognized for their talent, and this award strives to change that and award women who are going above and beyond in technology," Llanos said. "I'm one of those women."
Ramey described Llanos as a dedicated and hard-working student who also looks for ways to serve others.
"When she could be relaxing or having fun, she is working on some service project or volunteering," Ramey said. "She is always willing to help others and goes the extra mile to see that everything is done."
Ramey said she's also impressed by the way Llanos sets goals and works so hard.
"She does not wait around for things to fall into her lap, but she takes the initiative to get things done," Ramey said. "She doesn't want to know just one area of information technology; she wants to know and experience it all."
Llanos has taken a variety of technology classes in computer maintenance, programming and networking with equipment from Cisco. She takes Honors Network Administration 2, which leads to Microsoft Technology Specialists certification, and Advanced Studies in Network Engineering Cisco.
This is the first time Llanos has been recognized on the national level by NCWIT, but this is the second year in a row she has received the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing N.C. Affiliate Award. She also placed second in network design at the 2012 Future Business Leaders of America's state conference and placed first in Internet working at the Skills USA N.C. State Conference.
She's a member of the Future Business Leaders of America and Skills USA, National Honor Society and Mu Alpha Theta Mathematical Honor Society. She served as a high school facilitator guiding middle school students who were building computers for themselves and for families in their communities in the Spring 2011 Greensboro Youth Computer Technology Service Learning Project.
Llanos also enjoys playing sports with family and friends, studying math and learning new languages.
She plans to attend N.C. A&T to study electronics technology or Winston-Salem State University to study management information systems.
"My hope is to be working for Cisco after participating in an internship or co-op with them during my pursuit of my bachelor's degree," Llanos said. "My dream is to have my own personal server room in my home when I'm older that I will personally manage and have fully functioning."
Contact Jennifer Atkins Brown at 574-5582.
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