BDPA education programs are designed to spark an interest in Information Technology careers among students of color.
Community Youth Technology Education Programs
BDPA-Twin Cities is in our 8th year of providing Community Youth Technology Education Programs for students in grades 8-12 in the Twin Cities seven-county metro area. These programs are free in order to provide equal access to all students regardless of their economic status. Current student participants attend a variety of metro area schools, including St. Paul Central Senior High School, Bloomington Oak Grove and Valley View Middle Schools, St. Paul Como Senior High School, St. Louis Park Junior High, Hopkins Senior High School and 20 other schools.
BDPA’s Community Youth Technology Education Programs aim to diminish the “digital divide” facing communities of color by introducing minority teens to the technology used in the Information Technology field in a practical, skill-focused manner with positive interaction with their peers. This hands-on education is designed to spark student interest in computing, develop programming and technology skills and enhance future educational and career opportunities. Participating youth develop skills and abilities in the areas of public speaking, customer service and networking with professionals. They also learn important details of business professionalism such as proper business attire and being on time. IT professionals volunteer and serve as instructors in our programs, connecting youth to role models and mentors for pursuing computer science majors in college and careers in Information Technology. Graduates and alumni of our program receive college scholarships to assist with furthering their study in information technology. We have four programs:
1. CYTC – Community Youth Technology Camp (Exposure to Technology) This program is intended to provide high school students with limited exposure to technology the opportunity to learn in exciting hands-on topics based series. Topics include hardware/networking, basic HTML, multimedia, music technology and discussion time with IT professionals. This six to eight week program is offered in the summer in donated facilities (training lab, conference room, etc.).
2. HSTP – High School Technology Program - Internet Application Programming (Intermediate/Advanced Programming) This Saturday program is intended to teach motivated students interested in internet application development many core disciplines and application development principles. This multi-week program runs January through April at the St. Paul campus of Metro State. BDPA annually presents college scholarships to recognize the achievements of graduates and alumni from our programs
3. HSCC – High School Computer Competition Team (Advanced Programming) This program selects the top five students and alternates from HSTP and is intended to teach students who are capable of programming at higher levels the opportunity to compete in a national programming competition during BDPA’s national technical conference. This multi-week, intense program runs June through August. Classes are multiple times per week at various locations (and virtual) covering not only web application development but technology and BDPA history.
4. Student Internship Program Through this program, BDPA matches high school and college students with corporations and provides mentoring to those students. This program is designed to enable students to go from the classroom to boardroom. Participating corporations include General Mills, Medtronic, Visions IT and Keystone Computer Solutions.