Libraries and Code-Crew Helping Teens to Make the Most of Every ‘Hour’


Memphis Public Libraries are encouraging teens to spend an “hour of code” with the Code-Crew, a non-profit organization committed to teaching youth 21st century skills like computer coding. Through a partnership with Memphis Public Libraries, Code-Crew is offering teens inside CLOUD901 a free opportunity to learn skills that could pay exponentially in the future.

img_4117-croppedMeka Egwuekwe is co-founder and executive director of Code-Crew in Memphis. He says programs like what Code-Crew hosts in CLOUD901 are essential to preparing teens for the workforce. “Today in schools, students are learning Microsoft Office and Google Chrome – which are great skills to have – but they are not learning to become producers of technology,” Egwuekwe observed. “The teens who pursue computer science for a college career or entrepreneurship have the greatest potential, not only to step into jobs that are currently unfilled today but to become job creators and to start businesses.”

CLOUD901 Manager Jessica Chaney added, “Game development is a very important skill because it encompasses so many disciplines like science, mathematics and technology – things that the job force is begging for.”

As a part of a global initiative through www.code.org, Code-Crew is encouraging Memphis teens to spend an “Hour of Code,” a challenge for people, especially youth, to spend an hour learning or writing code during the month of December 2016. The objective – as explained on www.hourofcode.com – is for children and teens to learn what it takes to create the computer programs and apps that they love using!

Students in CLOUD901 who have learned coding skills to create original video games will showcase their creations to the public during the Unity Game Design Showcase on Saturday, Dec. 10, 2016, 1 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. at CLOUD901, located inside the Benjamin L. Hooks Central Library (3030 Poplar Ave.).

Students ages 13 – 18 can apply for Spring 2017 Code-Crew Classes at CLOUD901 by simply clicking here or by visiting http://bit.ly/TigerCrewSpring2017. Apply today! The application deadline is January 3, 2017. (The TigerCrew Program is funded by a Strengthening Communities Grant from the University of Memphis School of Urban Affairs and Public Policy.)

“Kids don’t have to wait until they are in college. With the skills they are learning here, they can actually start a business. We are teaching kids to code, but we’re also teaching them to think of themselves differently, to see themselves as makers. When they have these skills, we see tremendous potential for their careers,” Egwuekwe concluded.

For more information about Code-Crew, visit www.code-crew.org. For more information about the exciting opportunities inside teen lab CLOUD901, call (901) 415-2760 or visit www.memphislibrary.org and click the “Events” tab.

So, how will you spend your “hour”?

 

Story/Photo By: Marcey Wright, public relations supervisor (901) 576-6713