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Computer students blown away by international IBM speaker


University of Wolverhampton Computer Science students were blown away by an international speaker recently. 

IBM Z’s Chief Penguin, Dr Melissa Sassi, visited the University all the way from Arlington, Texas to inspire the degree students who are studying in the University’s School of Mathematics and Computer Science. 

As IBM Z’s Chief Penguin, Melissa created her own IBM penguin title and leads Student & Entrepreneur Experience worldwide within the IBM Z division of IBM. 

Prior to IBM, Melissa was an energy and internet access impact investor at Microsoft and led Microsoft’s celebrity talent management, as well as creative agency management globally, including its Empowering campaigns. 

As Founder & CEO of MentorNations, Melissa created a youth-led digital skills movement teaching tens of thousands of young people to code in twelve countries.  

Dr Herb Daly, Senior Lecturer in Computer Science at the University, said: “Melissa is an avid speaker on digital skills and inclusion, tech entrepreneurship, community building, youth empowerment, imposter syndrome & personal branding.   

“When I heard she was coming to the UK, I just knew she would be a great inspiration for our students and it was really exciting to welcome her to City Campus in Wolverhampton. She’s actually been working with some of our students for the past 18 months via IBM’s student evangelism and leadership program – Z Ambassador – so, it was good for her to see in real life where they are studying.” 

Melissa said: “When Dr Daly approached me with the opportunity to visit the University of Wolverhampton, I was incredibly excited to deliver a guest lecture for students here on the future of work. We discussed a number of topics, including innovation and creativity and how students can take their purpose and passion to weave them into their own purpose-driven careers. Students left inspired with the important role that volunteerism plays in developing real-world experience captured on their CVs. 

“IBM has a very long-standing relationship with Wolverhampton, and I love the power of bringing industry together with academia. I always look forward to engaging with students and sharing my knowledge with them when it comes to being future ready.” 

Kelechi Chibueze, studying for a Master’s degree in Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, said: “The lecture has really inspired me to put myself out there. I’m definitely going to go home and look for start-ups around me and I’m going to start volunteering more to help me get more experience for when I start to look around for jobs.” 

Anyone looking to study at the University of Wolverhampton should register for one of our forthcoming Open Days. 


For more information please contact the Corporate Communications Team.

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