The road less traveled – that is the path Nikole Najorka likes to take more often than not. As a computer science major at University of Michigan-Dearborn, she has found success in making her own way and helping others find their way. For that, she’s been named a “Difference Maker.”
“I have never been eager to follow someone else’s path,” she said. “Although creating your own path is not always the path with the least resistance, I have grown as a person, strengthened my skillset and become a difference maker.”
As one of a handful of female computer science students on campus, Nikole quickly realized there was no existing support system for women entering the IT field. Not one to stand by idly, she estalished a chapter of Michigan Council for Women in Technology, hoping to support other women through their education and career development.
Nikole already has gained valuable experience in her field, working with Ford Motor Co., Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office and Bright House Networks. Beyond that, she has shown a commitment to her community, volunteering for Computers to Educate Children and working at Camp Infinity for Girls, teaching the basics of website programming and robotics.
With plans to graduate in 2013, Nikole plans to begin a career in computer security or digital forensics. “Law and policies are changing each week in regards to these topics,” she said. “I find it exciting to be a part of this change and to make a difference through application of my knowledge and experiences.”
For those who know her, there’s no doubt about her ability to make a difference.
“Nikole is an academic achiever, a community service contributor and a developing professional who is determined to make a difference,” said Regina Storrs, director of career services. “Using her accomplishments as predictors, I suspect that her future impact in her field and community will be significant.”