The program director of IvyWorks at Ivy Tech Community College, Ariel Crawley, won the Tech Educator of the Year award during TechPoint’s 20th annual Mira awards honoring the best of tech in Indiana.
As director of IvyWorks at Ivy Tech Community College, Ariel Crawley has demonstrated an uncanny ability to provide students the support they need to first earn a degree or workforce credentials and then to build a career in one of Indiana’s fastest growing fields. In partnership with Indy Women in Tech, the IvyWorks program has yielded new graduates and an influx of women into the tech community. The program provides strategic professional development, business networking and wraparound support.
The Mira Awards judges were struck by Ariel’s dedication and personal sacrifices all done in service to the students. Beyond pointing them in the right direction, Ariel forges relationships with the students and companies and stays engaged to assist with the students’ career development.
The impact Ariel is having on the tech community is core to some of the biggest challenges that women face when they are changing or advancing in their careers. If the tools or connections she needs to help students aren’t available—or don’t exist—she creates them, and she does whatever it takes to open doors for students to walk through.
TechPoint, the nonprofit, industry-led growth accelerator for Indiana’s tech ecosystem, honored the successes and innovation of Indiana people, places, companies and products at the JW Marriott Indianapolis during the 20th annual Mira Awards gala presented by Angie’s List, Infosys, and Salesforce. With a sold-out crowd of 1,400 attendees—up another 100 from last year—this was the largest Mira Awards in the program’s 20-year history.
Only a handful of the 2019 nominees existed as companies 20 years ago, and 82 percent were founded in just the past 10 years. Similar to the rapid adoption of the iPhone starting a decade ago and streaming services today, tech businesses in Indiana have grown from a few pioneers to a fast growing, vibrant industry that is a key driver of job growth and a critical part of the state’s economic success story.
A total of 14 award winners and honorees were chosen from the 109 outstanding people, places companies and products that were selected as nominees for their achievements during the 2018 calendar year. Fifty-two independent, volunteer judges spent more than 850 total hours evaluating applications, interviewing nominees, and selecting this year’s winners. Judges included company founders, CEOs and presidents, CTOs, CIOs, and other subject matter experts.
The Mira Awards are named after the first of the brilliant variable stars to be discovered – the Mira Star. It is also the Latin root meaning “worthy of admiration, wonderful, marvelous.” The awards represent the best of tech in Indiana each year.