CS student Keer Liu pays it forward for the next-generation of women in computing

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Cheriton School of Computer Science student dreams of being a tech leader and building bridges for marginalized groups in tech

photo of Keer Liu
Keer Liu was 18 years old when she left China to study computer science at the University of Waterloo with a dream of becoming a leader in the tech industry. She wanted an exceptional foundation in computing, but her real dream has always been to lead.

This year, Keer will have an undergraduate degree in computer science, experience building a successful startup with her classmates, and six co-op work terms at some of the world’s best-known technology companies.

Working in companies such as Apple, Uber, Slack and Coinbase transformed her education, but Keer says the connections she made — and the female role models she met — while working in an industry still dominated by men have inspired her to not only lead but to build bridges for other young women in computing.

“I was able to get a co-op term with Apple on the basis of a recommendation from my supervisor at Slack,” Keer says, who starts full-time at Apple after graduating. The recommendation came from a female engineering colleague. Keer says the experience of reporting to three women during co-op terms in San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver shaped her vision of leadership.

“Female software engineers and managers have empathy for younger women just entering the field,” Keer says. “They have the engineering skills, but they also know how to mentor young students like me. I want to be able to do that for others.”

Learn more about Keer’s desire to build a global community of women and other marginalized groups who are as passionate about tech and transforming the world as she is.