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Including Guidance Counselors In the Mix

It seems that colleges and universities are starting to address the problem of declining enrollments in computer science by reaching beyond the traditional pool of high school computing teachers.

I recently received a flyer from Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken NJ announcing an event they call "Tomorrow's Information Technology Leaders". This workshop is geared towards educators in the NY/NJ metropolitan area (although eastern Pennsylvania is also close enough to attend). The day contains a keynote by the CIO of IBM Research (talking about industry's needs) with breakout sessions geared specifically towards CS teachers and guidance counselors. Yes, that's right, guidance counselors. I was so excited to see that part of the program was for them that I ran right to the copy machine and then to the guidance department in order to recruit at least one of our counselors to come with me to the event.

Guidance counselors are incredibly important partners in the challenge of informing students about the opportunities that computing provides and its relation to other key academic disciplines and careers. High School students are surrounded by so many pressures and are pulled in so many directions that sometimes it is difficult for them to see appreciate how truly universal computer science is and the breadth of opportunities it provides. Informed guidance counselors can help attract students to our courses simply by including CS in their discussions with students.

If you are in the area, I would strongly recommend that you check out www.stevens.edu/undergrad/it for details of the Steven's event and consider registering. Even better, convince one or two of your guidance counselors this day would benefit them as well. If you need to, you can entice them with the idea of a free lunch.

Leigh Ann Sudol
Publications Chair

Comments

This is a very good initiative taken by you. I personally recommend & am in favour of a Guidance Counselor in each & every Educational Institution. I personally used to guide my students for the last 15 years of my Teaching Tenure, without any specific Designation, from my Institution.

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