William Blair’s Women in Technology (WiT) Program hosted the fifth annual Summer Internship Showcase on August 10. A total of 19 undergraduate and graduate students interned for Information Technology teams across the firm this summer. Their internship culminated in a showcase event in which the interns presented their value-driven work this summer to William Blair employees, both online and in person.

“This year’s showcase demonstrated the steadfastness and dedication of this summer’s group of women with projects that will provide continuous benefit to William Blair,” System Engineering Manager and WiT Board Chair Trish Linnane said. “It also emphasized the special camaraderie between this cohort and how they rooted for each other during this year’s internship. It was wonderful to see this aspect of the program.”

The Interns

Alyssa Barker Howard University
Jenna Caster University of Wisconsin - Madison
Siche Chen Northwestern University
Sravya Dandibhatta Purdue University
Paige Edelheit Northwestern University
Shay Finn DePaul University
Swathi Ganesan University of Chicago
Jessica Garcia Flores University of Illinois - Chicago
Gillian Gracey Northwestern University
Yibei Hu Georgia Institute of Technology
Yaurie Hwang Northwestern University
Amelia Klebba Purdue University
Linh Le University of Chicago
Madison Manley North Carolina A&T State University
Cate Mathews Northwestern University
Martina Perez-Zuleta University of Illinois – Urbana Champaign
Natalie Ratowski DePaul University
Tanishaa Shah Purdue University
Caitlin Wepfer University of Illinois - Urbana Champaign

Empowering and Advocating

The WiT Program was established in 2018 as a grassroots effort to strengthen the information technology workforce by empowering and advocating for women to have thriving careers in technology. Since its formation, WiT has grown substantially, from four interns in its first year to a record 30 last year. Nine WiT interns have been hired to full-time positions in Information Technology at William Blair over the years.

Next Generation of Female Technologists

Priyal Maheshwari, a data scientist within the IT department, participated in the WiT program in the summer of 2021. From the moment she joined the firm as a WiT intern, Maheshwari was captivated by the innovative spirit of WiT and the forward-thinking approach to financial solutions of William Blair.

The firm’s commitment to staying ahead of the technological curve and the prioritization of employees’ feedback and needs motivated Maheshwari to continue working at William Blair after her internship ended.

“The collaborative environment where everyone, regardless of their role, is encouraged to bring new ideas to the table is truly invigorating,” Maheshwari said. “Being involved in the continuation of the program is an opportunity to be at the forefront of technological advances. I’m excited to ensure we continue to deliver excellence while adapting to the ever-changing financial landscape.”

Historically, the technology industry has been predominantly male-dominated. By promoting and supporting young women pursuing careers in technology, Maheshwari believes that WiT paves the way for creating a supportive environment for the next generation of female technologists to thrive.

“By promoting and supporting women in technology,” Maheshwari said, “we ensure these students see themselves represented at all levels – from entry-level positions to executive roles. By supporting and mentoring this next generation, we’re actively paving our way toward a more balanced and equitable industry.”