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CSTA Leadership Cohort Update from Washington (State)

As a member of the CSTA Leadership cohort, I have had an exciting year in Washington. A group of very dedicated educators and business members have been working since January 2009 in the formation of a chapter of the Computer Science Teachers Association in Western Washington State. We have met monthly since January 2009. We are a small team, but a very passionate one. We have been discussing what we want our group to accomplish, setting goals that are attainable and not overwhelming ourselves attempting to accomplish too much. There is so much that we would like to do, but we are taking small steps and ensuring that that which we do take on is done well.

We have started to put together a list of resources that have been vetted by our members, as well as information on programming language selection for courses. We have also shared information on related workshops in the area that our members might attend.

We were able to put on a very successful computer programming competition, hosted by the University of Washington in Seattle. A very capable member of our group was willing to relocate a contest she had planned to put on at her high school to the University of Washington. Members' industry contacts supplied us with many volunteer judges from industry. The University of Washington provided space, student-led tours of the Computer Science and Engineering facilities, some interesting lectures and lunch and snacks for the contest. Thanks to fast and efficient planning, the contest was a great success. We plan on repeating it in the fall and spring each year.

We are on meeting hiatus for the summer, but are planning a discussion on Alice 3.0 (if it releases on time) in September once we all return to school. We are also looking into other possible workshops and contests that we could offer to teachers and students, and will continue sharing information with our members, as well as other groups interested in what we are accomplishing.

We are a small team, but we are determined. There is a lot that we hope to accomplish, and we will over time.

Greg Kilpatrick
Puget Sound CSTA (pending chapter approval)

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