2016 Annual General Interest Meeting

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As many of you know, last Wednesday (9/19) UMass ACM met for a General Interest Meeting. There was a great turnout for our first event this year, with the attendance reaching nearly 100 members. This was the largest presence I have seen since being a member of ACM and was very impressed with how strong are organization has become. For those of you who missed the first event due to scheduling conflicts, the purpose of this meeting was to help students understand what it means to be part of the UMass chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery along with what our goals are for this coming year. In order to make this year a success, we are looking for students to express their interest in certain aspects of Computer Science that may not be offered to students in Computer Science classes.

Many of the younger students have displayed ambition to learning more about the different fields of Computer Science and there is a desire to expand the amount of ACM Interest Groups (subgroups of the ACM for specific interests). There was a number of students, with some background in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, who reached out after the meeting saying they would be interested in leading Interest Groups, but would appreciate the help of others(Co-founders) in coming up with ideas for these meetings or teaming up with them to facilitate activities for these groups. Some of the current ACM Interest Groups you should check out are ACM-ICPC (International Collegiate Programming Contest), Cybersecurity club, CS Women, and the UX(User Experience) club. No matter what your is experience in hacking or building UIs, all levels can gain from attending these events and these groups hold a lot of workshops to improve your skills in a casual setting.

The meeting ended with the most entertaining icebreaker I have ever been a part of, and I have to say we have an awesome group this year full of some of the most creative and engaging students I have ever met. The witty exchanges that went on during the icebreaker, a game of nonverbal telephone, was the perfect ending full of laughs to a wonderful event. If you would like to become a member of the ACM you can sign up at umass.acm.org/members to recieve announcements about our upcoming events. We are here to help, so if you’d like to learn more about the ACM or have questions about this recap, you can reach out on FB (UMass ACM Student Chapter), website (umass.acm.org), talk to one of the officers through the official ACM email (umass.acm@gmail.com), or reach out to us directly (Chair Susie Kim, Vice-Chair Lynn Samson, Secretary Mike Sadler, Treasurer Chenhao Huang, or Faculty Sponsor Professor Arjun Guha). Thank you all for making the ACM into what it is today!