June 2014 | Grant Newsletter
Web Pros Teach Teens to Code
HACK IT: (above) ScriptEd students, paired with a mentor from the industry, compete with teens from other schools in a hackathon. Photo by Vaughn Wallace DELIVERED: (left) Students at the Arthur Ashe Health Science Academy take a hands-on approach to learning obstetrics at SUNY Downstate Medical Center.
This experiment began in 2012, and early results are, as developers put it, positive .
The teens say they like the program, and ScriptEd, the nonprofit that runs it, is getting requests to expand to other high schools. Why the demand? Three reasons: A lack of teachers who specialize in computer science (pay is far higher in the private sector than in schools); professionals in this fast-changing field can teach up-to-date content; and mentors give teens a direct connection to jobs in the industry.
“Our students are thrilled to be taught exactly what they need to know to get a job,” says Maurya Couvares, executive director and co-founder of ScriptEd. This gives students a way to channel their obsession with technology into producing it instead of just using it, she says.
The teens take in-school and after-school classes twice a week. They learn programming languages and web applications, go on field trips to technology companies, and shadow software developers at work. They finish by testing their skills in a hackathon and doing paid summer internships. Our $40,000 grant is helping bring ScriptEd to nine more schools.
More Grants for STEM Education
$40,000 to Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health expands Health Science Academy, a three-year program for minority high school students in Brooklyn. They take college-level courses at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, attend seminars on health careers, and compete for paid research internships at Downstate and community sites.
$75,000 to New York Academy of Sciences, which recruits scientists to volunteer to teach nanotechnology, robotics, programming, and life sciences in more than 100 classrooms and after-school programs. The academy also will host family science fairs and a robotics competition.