10 students are part of the pilot Intro to Computer Science course
In September, 2019, Loughlin started a new STEM course after winning a grant from Amazon earlier in the year. Thanks to the grant, 10 students were chosen to pilot the new Intro to Computer Science course designed by the start-up digital education company, Edhesive. More than 20 students are signed up for the course in the Spring of 2020 and Loughlin anticipates that student interest will only grow.
The Amazon Future Engineer program initiative seeks to “dramatically expand access to high caliber preparatory courses, curricular resources, and programs for schools and districts to help prepare and propel high school students forward in their pursuit of AP Computer Science education.”
Paul Camilleri ’64, a Long Island City resident and alumnus, suggested to Brother Dennis that Loughlin should consider applying for the grant early in 2019. Paul sat on a community advisory committee working with Amazon officials after the borough was selected to become the “2nd headquarters” for the company (before the tides shifted). Paul noted that “they were looking for local public schools to partner with, but I mentioned a terrific school in Brooklyn I just happened to attend.” Amazon was impressed with the application and chose Loughlin as a grant recipient. As part of the grant, Amazon offers engineers to mentor and speak with students.
Mr. Luis Montes is the Loughlin instructor selected to teach the initial course. “I knew right away that this would be a challenging and fast paced course for students. They have embraced the challenge. We are excited about the potential.”
The initial interactive introductory course is designed for students who are brand new to computer programming. The course teaches the foundations of computer science using the Python language. Edhesive states that “the goal is for the course is to prepare students to take on AP Computer Science A and AP Computer Science Principles in the future.” The introductory course will teach our students how to think computationally and solve complex problems – skills that will be useful in all areas of study.
Loughlin is excited to bring Computer Applications into their growing STEM curriculum which now includes a variety of Biomedical Science and Engineering courses.
Click here to read our acceptance letter into the program
Mr. Luis Montes is the Loughlin instructor selected to teach the initial course