Computer Coding at Springbrook High School in Maryland
WASHINGTON, DC (CapitalWirePR) December 2, 2015 – Verizon, Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) and Montgomery County Council Member Nancy Navarro launched the Code as a Second Language (CSL) effort at Springbrook High School, Media Center on the 2nd Fl., 201 Valley Brook Dr., Silver Spring, Maryland this Wednesday, December 2.
High school students will be introduced to and taught computer coding over an eight-week period in coordination with the school while being exposed to tech professionals who will be able to serve as mentors.
The CSL initiative will also be executed by Verizon and HHF at a school in Northern Virginia and Washington, DC, as part of Verizon’s commitment to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. CSL instructors are young programmers who are in HHF’s LOFT (Latinos On Fast Track) Network and the initiative is currently in up to 50 schools in more than 15 regions across the nation.
“Driving the CSL effort is the belief that all youth deserve access to technology-based programs and have an opportunity to enter the workforce in a stronger position which will help America move forward,” said Antonio Tijerino. “Verizon and Council Member Navarro share that vision and we are grateful for their leadership preparing our youth to be innovators.”
Montgomery County Council Member, Nancy Navarro stated, “We are making investments in the retention and creation of jobs through the adoption of Master and Sector Plans that position Montgomery County as a global technology destination. I am thankful to HHF, Verizon, and Montgomery County Public Schools for engaging in initiatives like Coding as a Second Language which will train our students, especially those from communities that are underrepresented in STEM fields, to become part of the creation of a qualified workforce pipeline.”
Although there will be a need to fill nearly two million tech jobs by the next five years, 90 percent of schools in the U.S. do not teach coding. The CSL initiative is designed to fil that gap.
Mario Acosta-Velez, Verizon’s Director of State Government Affairs, said: “Verizon is proud to partner with the Hispanic Heritage Foundation to implement the Code as a Second Language program. Our goal is to help build the students’ coding skills and increase their interest and engagement in STEM-related fields and careers. We want to help prepare our future leaders for the 21st century by fostering collaboration among students, enhance their problem-solving skills and provide a solid introduction to STEM.”
The CSL initiative includes: identification of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in collaboration with schools; baseline survey of students’ knowledge to test progress throughout CSL course; guest speakers from the technology industry; engagement of private and public sector volunteers; eight sessions; hands-on assistance for students working on course material outside of class time; soft skill development such as leadership and collaboration; work-based learning such as building actual products and presentation to peers; and certifications upon completion.
The students will also be funneled to the award-winning LOFT Network for ongoing on-line instruction and will be connected to other students, mentors, networking, resources, STEM-related events, and later, internships and full-time positions with Fortune 500 companies.