Fredonia’s Computer and Information Sciences to host regional Hour of Code initiative

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FREDONIA COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCE STUDENTS WORK IN A COMPUTER LAB ON CAMPUS.
FREDONIA COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCE STUDENTS WORK
IN A COMPUTER LAB ON CAMPUS.

The State University of New York
at Fredonia’s Department of Computer and Information Sciences is
joining the largest coding learning event in history: The Hour of Code.
This national event, occurring throughout the week of Dec. 8-14, will
take place on the Fredonia campus on Tuesday, Dec. 9, at 7 p.m. in 115
Fenton Hall.

First held in 2013, the Hour of Code is a major initiative of Code.org,
a non-profit entity dedicated to expanding participation in computer
science by making it available in more schools, and increasing
participation by women and underrepresented students of color. The
organization’s vision is that every student in every school should
have the opportunity to learn computer science. Its organizers believe
computer science and computer programming should be part of the core
curriculum in education, alongside other science, technology,
engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses.

In one week last year, 15 million students tried computer science. The
field was featured on the homepages of Google, MSN, Yahoo! and Disney.
President Obama, pop music icon Shakira and actor Ashton Kutcher all
kicked off the 2013 Hour of Code with videos. Over 100 partners came
together to support the movement.

“Computers are everywhere, but fewer schools teach computer science
than 10 years ago,” said Fredonia faculty member Gregory Cole.
“Women and minorities are severely underrepresented as well. The good
news is, events like this can play a big role in changing that.”

“The Hour of Code is designed to demystify code and show that computer
science is not rocket-science — anybody can learn the basics,” said
Hadi Partovi, founder and CEO of Code.org. “Now, we’re aiming for
100 million [participants] worldwide to prove that the demand for
relevant, 21st-century computer science education crosses all borders
and knows no boundaries.”

In addition to its own students, Fredonia’s Computer and Information
Sciences faculty invite interested area K-12 schools and civic groups to
contact the department, visit the campus, and join in this year’s Hour
of Code event.

“We are eager to demonstrate how exciting it is to work with
computers,” added Fredonia’s Computer and Information Sciences
Department Chair Reneta Barneva. “We are planning to show the
participants how to work with ‘Alice,’ an innovative programming
environment in which 3-D computer-animated characters can be created
using ‘drag-and-drop’ techniques.”

The Alice demonstration will be led by Fredonia Professor Adrienne Pelz.
The department also offers a number of innovative courses covering such
topics as mobile app development, security and ethics, game development,
web programming, 3D modeling, data mining, cloud computing, e-commerce,
and ethical hacking.

“We will show our participants some of the projects our students have
developed in these areas,” Dr. Barneva added.

For more information, please contact Gregory Cole of the Computer and
Information Sciences Department at Gregory.Cole@fredonia.edu or
673-3646.