Local Organizations Join Mission to Introduce Native American Students to Computer Science
Friday, December 14, 2018
Posted by: Linda Coyle
– December 4, 2018
Organizations Join Mission to Introduce Native American Students to
minorities, specifically Native Americans are severely underrepresented in
computer science classes and in the tech industry. The good news, partnering organizations
like Science Foundation Arizona, Salt River Project (SRP) and Code.org are on
the way to change this.
Foundation Arizona (SFAz), with support of the Arizona Legislature and the
Department of Education supports the Native American Code Writers Program in
high schools across Arizona. The program expands opportunities for Native
American high school students to learn computer-programming skills and provide
internship opportunities with industry partners, helping students develop their
skills and identify future employment opportunities.
Computer Science Education Week (December 3rd-9th),
students from the Native American Code Writers Program at Cesar Chavez High
School traveled to the K-8 Gila Crossing Community School on the Gila River
Indian Reservation for a special Hour of Code event. The Hour of Code,
organized by the nonprofit Code.org and over 100 others, is a global movement
that believes students of today are ready to learn critical skills for
21st-century success by engaging in computer science activities and experiences.
schools students came prepared to mentor their younger peers with the Hour of
Code activites and a variety of hands-on engaging robotics with laptops,
headphones, charging stations and computer science teacher professional
development supported by Salt River Project.
support of Science Foundation Arizona is consistent with our goal of preparing
students for educational success and developing their skills so, in turn, they
can contribute to Arizona’s workforce,” said Erika Castro with SRP Community
Outreach program. "The program provides a unique opportunity for SRP to partner
with Arizona Science Foundation to provide support to the Gila River Indian
Foundation Arizona partnered with SRP with this task in mind. "Preparing students for jobs within our local
economy is imperative if we want to remain competitive”, stated Linda Coyle,
SFAz director of education. "With less
than 500 CS college graduates to fill over 11,000 open computing jobs in
Arizona, we need to start introducing computer science to students in younger
and younger grades. Targeting girls and
our underrepresented communities is strategically crucial”, said Coyle.
Hour of Code is designed to demystify code and show that computer science is
not rocket science—anybody can learn the basics," said Hadi Partovi,
founder and CEO of Code.org. "Over 100 million students worldwide have
tried an Hour of Code. The demand for relevant 21st-century computer science
education crosses all borders and knows no boundaries."
students from Cesar Chavez High School and the Gila Crossing Community School
demonstrated an interest in continuing this mentoring partnership between the
two schools. After school and Saturday
clubs in both computer science and robotics are currently being planned for the
additional information, contact Linda Coyle at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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About Science Foundation
Science Foundation Arizona (SFAz) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit
organization initiated in 2006 by the Greater Phoenix Leadership Inc., Southern
Arizona Leadership Council and the Flagstaff Forty in conjunction with the
executive and legislative branches of State government. SFAz serves as a catalyst
for high-wage, knowledge-based jobs and economic diversity through
administration and strict oversight of research, development and education
grants to public education and other non-profit research performing
institutions. For more information, visit www.sfaz.org and like us on Facebook.
About Salt River Project
contributes more than $1.3 million to education initiatives, grants and partnerships
throughout Arizona, in addition to providing free training and resources to
educators throughout the state. SRP is a community-based, not-for-profit public
power utility and the largest provider of electricity in the greater Phoenix
metropolitan area, serving more than 1 million customers. SRP also is the
metropolitan area’s largest supplier of water, delivering about 800,000
acre-feet annually to municipal, urban and agricultural water users.
Code.org is a 501c3 public non-profit dedicated to expanding
participation in computer science and increasing participation by women and
underrepresented students of color. Its vision is that every student in every
school has the opportunity to learn computer programming. After launching in
2013, Code.org organized the Hour of Code campaign – which has introduced over
100 million students to computer science to date – and partnered with 70 public
school districts nationwide to expand computer science programs. Code.org is
supported by philanthropic donations from corporations, foundations and
generous individuals, including Microsoft, Facebook, Infosys Foundation USA,
Amazon, and others. For more information, please visit: code.org.