February 6, 2018- Northern Kentucky University will host New York Times bestselling author Liza Mundy on Feb. 8. Mundy will discuss her book, “Code Girls: The Untold Story of the American Women Code Breakers of World War II” in an event co-hosted by the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Informatics.
“Code Girls” reveals for the first time the revolutionary achievements and patriotic service of these remarkable young women. Their astonishing code breaking triumphs against the Germans and Japanese helped secure an Allied victory. However, their vow of secrecy nearly erased their vital contributions from U.S. history.
“I did sometimes have to convince the women that after nearly 75 years, it is okay to talk. Sometimes it took some cajoling. When I was telling Dot Braden Bruce that it’s okay to talk, she hesitated, but then mused; ‘Well, what are they going to do to me at my age? Send me to prison?’ I told her that if they did, it would probably be a nice prison, and she laughed,” Mundy stated. “My sense was that they were still very respectful of their vow of secrecy—now lifted—but after all this time of having their work ignored, they were also eager to get some credit and have their contribution recognized. Understandably so.”
Mundy also credits NKU Mathematics Professor Chris Christensen for his help with her book. Dr. Christensen is an expert in cryptology.
“We are so excited to have Liza come to NKU talk about this amazing piece of our country’s history. She is one of the nation's foremost experts on women and work issues. I know our campus will get a lot out of this event that ties history and cryptology and computer science together in an important way. And Chris’ involvement with the book is an added special bonus,” said Dean Diana McGill, College of Arts and Sciences.
“Code-breaking continues to be relevant today, and it is just as challenging now as it was during World War II. It will be inspiring for our students to hear of the heroic efforts of these women, and how their mathematical and computational skills helped protect the world's democracies in wartime,” said Dean Kevin Kirby, College of Informatics
· What: “Code Girls: The Untold Story of the American Women Code Breakers of World War II”
· When: February 8, 2018, 7 p.m.
· Where: NKU’s Otto Budig Theatre
Mundy is also the featured speaker at the Tri-State Women in Computing Conference (TRIWiC) on Feb. 9. The College of Informatics is a Gold Sponsor of TRIWiC. For more information on the conference, click here.
About NKU: Northern Kentucky University is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2018! Founded in 1968, we are a growing metropolitan university of more than 14,000 students served by more than 2,000 faculty and staff on a thriving suburban campus near Cincinnati. Located in the quiet suburb of Highland Heights, Kentucky—just seven miles southeast of Cincinnati—we have become a leader in Greater Cincinnati and Kentucky by providing a private school education for a fraction of the cost. While we are one of the fastest growing universities in Kentucky, our professors still know our students' names. For more information on our 50th, visit nku.edu/50.