Capital One program sparks STEM interest for budding programmers
More than 50 students from Boys and Girls Club of Collin County and Bowman Middle School in Plano recently celebrated the completion of a 10-week Capital One Coders Program. Students demoed the apps they created with MIT AppInventor during a special night on the Capital One Campus.
Capital One recognized apps in three categories (Most Creative, Most Technical, and Best Overall). The program’s graduates were also surprised with a Chromebook and tablet.
Each team used the Coders Program to create a game that could be played through a mobile app. The winning app from the Boys and Girls Club of Plano was a take on “Crossy Road,” and the game’s objective was to cross a road with passing cars. Another team created a maze app.
“It was hard at the beginning, but I really got the hang of it,” said Tamia Johnson, a freshman at Vines High School. “You really can put your own ideas into it. I’m proud of our team’s accomplishment.”
Capital One mentors launched a new Coders curriculum this year. Students learned the Python coding language and built different modules, including a functioning stop light made with LED lights. Since the creation of the Coders Program in 2014, Capital One has worked with more than 1,500 students in North Texas.
Creating an app is never something I thought I’d be able to do
“Creating an app is never something I thought I’d be able to do,” said Sandy Gurison, an Allen High School sophomore. “This experience was so cool.”
That experience is exactly what David Schaaf, Capital One Financial Services’ Director of Data Engineering, likes most about the rewarding program.
“When I grew up, I didn’t have this kind of access to computers until much later in life,” he said. “It’s wonderful to see every kid’s face when they get their coding to work. This is such an important time in their lives. Even if we don’t inspire them to do technology, we still gave them an experience that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives. We’re setting them up for the future.”
COURTESY: Ashley Richardson/Capital One