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Source: United States House of Representatives – Congressman Greg Gianforte (Montana)

During Computer Science Education Week, Congressman Greg Gianforte (R-Mont.) recognized Buffy Smith of Helena for her dedication to educating Montana students and for encouraging more young people, particularly young women, to study computer science and other STEM fields.

An educator for 27 years, Buffy is breaking down barriers, paving the way for female and minority students to find their way into computer science. With her commitment to her students and her knowledge of computer science, Buffy has created an all-inclusive approach to the subject. She prioritizes encouraging students to work with others who have different views and thus enhance the outcome of a project.

Gianforte’s Spirit of Montana is a weekly recognition of Montanans for their accomplishments, dedication, or service. Gianforte highlights the recipient in the U.S. House of Representatives and personally contacts the honorees.

Gianforte encourages anyone to nominate Montanans for the Spirit of Montana award by contacting his office at 202-225-3211 or by email at https://gianforte.house.gov/contact/email.

Gianforte’s statement in the Congressional Record follows:

RECOGNIZING BUFFY SMITH OF HELENA

Madam Speaker, I rise today to honor Buffy Smith of Helena for encouraging female students to study computer science and for emphasizing the importance of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education.

Buffy grew up in and graduated high school in Gardiner. She then went to Carroll College where she majored in English and minored in Computer Science. Following her undergraduate studies, she earned a secondary high school teaching endorsement in computer science. It was there she found her call to teach.

As an educator for 27 years, Buffy is breaking down barriers, paving the way for female and minority students to find their way into computer science.

This year, Buffy received the National Educator Award from the National Center for Women and Information Technology. The award honors educators who encourage underrepresented students to participate in computer science. Buffy won statewide awards in 2014, 2015, and 2017.

When Buffy began teaching, she thought she would focus mostly on academics. Years later, she came to believe the relationships developed in the classroom are as critical.

With her commitment to her students and her knowledge of computer science, Buffy has created an all-inclusive approach to the subject. She prioritizes encouraging students to work with others who have different views and thus enhance the outcome of a project.

Buffy mentors girls in her class and encourages them to explore computer science and technology careers. She says, as with her classroom, computer science and other STEM fields can only improve with greater diversification.  

Madam Speaker, for her dedication to educating Montana students and for encouraging more young people, particularly young women, to study computer science and other STEM fields, I recognize Buffy Smith of Helena for her Spirit of Montana.

MIL OSI USA News