CEWiT Intern A'niyah Birdsong crowned Miss IU

By Nadine Herman

Thursday, March 2, 2017

CEWiT member A’niyah Birdsong was crowned Miss IU Sunday, Feb. 26 in Alumni Hall. An intern for the special interest group Black Women in Technology, Birdsong was overwhelmed when she was announced as the winner.

“There were a million things going through my head. I was all over the place,” says Birdsong. “I was genuinely happy. I was so proud of myself.” Birdsong is a senior studying biology on the pre-med track. As a science major, she was naturally curious about CEWiT. Although she claims to not be particularly tech-savy, Birdsong decided to broaden her horizons and join the CEWiT team.

A'niyah Birdsong performs a choreographed routine that incorporates science for the talent contest at the Miss IU pageant.
A'niyah Birdsong performs a choreographed routine that incorporates science for the talent contest at the Miss IU pageant.

Since transferring to IU in her sophomore year, the Miss IU Pageant was always on her radar. Although she’s never competed in a pageant before, Birdsong decided to participate for her senior year. Being a CEWiT intern gave Birdsong a competitive edge during the Miss IU Pageant. Her platform involves STEM outreach, focusing on overcoming stereotypes and gender biases. CEWiT’s mission aligns with Birdsong’s platform and allowed her to leverage her experience.

CEWiT’s mission of empowering women in technology has had a personal impact on Birdsong. She appreciates that CEWiT encourages young women to cultivate a voice in order to claim her spot in the technology field. After graduation, Birdsong plans on taking a gap year to work and take the MCAT. Through her Miss IU win and her work with CEWiT, Birdsong urges women who are interested in pursing technology to not be intimidated by the industry. “Even though you’re under represented in technology or any STEM related area, just know that if this is what you really want to do, always put your mind to it,” says

Birdsong. “I won Miss IU and I was really uncomfortable at first but I stuck with my guns and pursued it, despite my experiences or things I had doubts about. Just believe in yourself and you can do anything you put your mind to.”

A'niyah Birdsong is crowned Miss IU.
A'niyah Birdsong is crowned Miss IU.