Google and Rep. Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson Host Computer Science Event for DuBois Youth

Alex Sanchez, a Google presenter at the CS First Roadshow, works with a pair of students finishing up their project and story using the Scratch coding tool. (Photo by Joelle Watt)

Google’s program teaches kids about the importance of STEM education with a hands-on coding activity.

DUBOIS – On Monday morning, Google and U.S. Rep. Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson paid a visit to the DuBois Area Middle School to deliver the CS First Roadshow, a computer science education presentation developed by Google for fourth- through eighth-grade school students.

Two Google employees delivered the hour-long presentation, which focuses on teaching students both problem solving and technical coding skills through a series of interactive activities.

Google employees encouraged kids to develop an interest in computer science education by giving real-life examples of how coding and STEM education can lead to educational opportunities and exciting careers.

Thompson also participated in the presentation at DuBois Area Middle School.

He kicked off the presentation by expressing the importance of learning about computer science at an early age, and helped kids build their own fun stories using Scratch, an introductory coding tool.

“It’s exciting to host this event for these students,” said Thompson. “We need computer science as a part of their education because coders and technology are part of many fields, such as medical, engineering, manufacturing and business, and these skills can open those doors to higher-paying jobs and success in their future.”

In Pennsylvania, there are more than 17,000 open computing jobs, which is 3.4 times the state average demand rate. Additionally, there’s a shortage of computer science graduates and only 20 percent are female.

The CS First Roadshow aims to offset these statistics by travelling to classrooms across the country to encourage students in computer science.

By 2020, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts there will be 1 million more computer science jobs than graduating students who qualify for the jobs.

U.S. Rep. Glenn “GT” Thompson interacts with students working on a coding project called Adventure on the High Seas. CS First Roadshow by Google is a presentation that allows students to code their own stories using Scratch, an easy-to-use coding software that teaches students the basics of computer science. (Photo by Joelle Watt)

These jobs are in every state, in every industry and they are projected to grow at twice the rate of all other jobs.

“Kids are exposed to technology at such an early age, but don’t necessarily get to learn about why computer science should be an important part of their lives – both now and in the future,” said Alex Sanchez, a Google spokesperson.

“We want the next generation of students to be able to create technology, not just consume it.”

The CS First Roadshow teaches students about the importance of STEM education and uses interactive activities to teach them coding basics.

The goal of the presentation is to encourage students to develop an interest in computer science education and grow both their problem solving and technical coding skills.

You can find more information on how to get involved with CS First in your community by visiting https://www.cs-first.com.

 

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