OSU professor wins national mentorship award


CORVALLIS, Ore. – Margaret Burnett, a professor of computer science at Oregon State University, has won a national award for her leadership in encouraging women and minorities to pursue computer science.

The National Center for Women and Information Technology awarded Burnett the Undergraduate Research Mentoring Award at the 2015 NCWIT Summit on Women and IT.

The award honors her achievements in providing outstanding mentorship – 100 percent of her research students have graduated with degrees in computer science or information technology, and 59 percent have gone on to graduate school. About half have been members of underrepresented groups, such as females and ethnic minority groups.

Burnett started her career in 1971 when there were few female computer scientists. She was the first woman hired into management at a 13,000-employee complex of Procter & Gamble, and one of the first two females hired as tenure-track faculty in computer science at OSU. Throughout her career as a professor she has involved undergraduates in her nationally recognized research on human aspects of software development.

Most of her undergraduates are co-authors on at least one conference or journal paper. Several of her students went on to receive fellowships from Google, the National Science Foundation, and the National Physical Sciences Consortium, and one became a Rhodes Scholar finalist.

College of Engineering

About the OSU College of Engineering: The OSU College of Engineering is among the nation's largest and most productive engineering programs. Since 1999, the college has more than tripled its research expenditures to $37.2 million by emphasizing highly collaborative research that solves global problems. It is a leader in signature research areas, including precision health, clean energy, resilient infrastructure and advanced manufacturing; and targeted strategic areas, including robotics, materials research and clean water.