The University of Alabama Department of Computer Science within the College of Engineering hosts multiple K-12 Outreach events for students and teachers across multiple grade levels. Details about the activities can be found below. Please contact Dr. Jeff Gray for additional information.
Computer Science Course Preparation for Students and Teachers
The Department of Computer Science has multiple grants from the National Science Foundation and the US Department of Education to support K-12 students and teachers. For example, the NSF LEGACY project (https://legacy.ua.edu/) prepares Black female students with a year-long experience for the College Board AP CS Principles (AP CSP) course. The US Department of Education supports the Pathways for Alabama Computer Science, which prepares teachers in three separate high school Computer Science courses and also offers high school counselors a special workshop to understand how they can help to increase awareness of Computer Science in their school.
The National Center for Women in IT – Aspirations in Computing Award
The Department of Computer Science at the University of Alabama is proud to host the Award for Aspirations in Computing in Northern Alabama. The NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing builds a talent pool for the growing technical workforce and helps celebrate diversity in computing by honoring young women for their computing-related achievements and interests. Award recipients are selected based on their aptitude and aspirations in technology and computing; leadership ability; academic history; and plans for post-secondary education. The Aspirations in Computing Educator Award identifies outstanding educators who play a pivotal role in encouraging young women to explore their interest in computing and technology, and recognizes these educators for their efforts to promote gender equity in computing. Each Fall, award recipients are selected for their aptitude and interest in IT and computing, solid leadership ability, good academic history, and plans for post-secondary education. Awardees are invited to a banquet dinner each Spring with their parents and teachers.
More information about the NCWIT Aspirations award is available at: https://www.aspirations.org/aspirations-community/alabama-northern
The University of Alabama Capture the Flag Competition
The University of Alabama Computer Science Department in conjunction with the Crimson Defense Cyber Security Club hosts an annual Capture the Flag competition (UACTF), a Jeopardy-style Capture the Flag Competition meant as a way to connect with the next generation of cyber security professionals. The competition is designed to test the cyber security skills of high school students in grades 10-12. Although it is in the style of a competition, this is a fun educational exercise with opportunities for students at all skill levels. Through UACTF, students are provided with opportunities to collaborate, learn, and be exposed to a different way of thinking about cyber security. This includes thinking about possible careers in the cyber security field. For more information, please contact Dr. Travis Atkison.
Alabama Robotics Contest
Since 2011, the University of Alabama Department of Computer Science has offered a statewide robotics contest for all students in grades K-12 to test their computer programming skills and compete with other Alabama students for cool prizes. A fun day is planned with educational experiences, food and social activities. The Alabama Robotics Competition is an event where students write programs that navigate their robot across a series of obstacle courses. Awards are given out in several categories across multiple grade levels (elementary school, middle school, and high school).
More information about the robotics contest is available at: http://outreach.cs.ua.edu/robotics-contest/