Stu­dent Cod­ing Work Re­sults In In­tern­ship

Escalon Times - - FRONT PAGE -

Work­ing to im­prove ac­cess to and in­struc­tion in cod­ing at Escalon High School, a club has been formed, stu­dents have par­tic­i­pated in coun­ty­wide ‘hackathon’ events and one stu­dent now has par­layed it into a sum­mer in­tern­ship op­por­tu­nity.

An­gel Sanchez was re­cently named the re­cip­i­ent of the in­tern­ship through Rare Parts Inc., a ma­chine shop in Stockton.

Teach­ers Rick He­flin and Chris Oliveira helped pave the way, join­ing up with the San Joaquin County Of­fice of Ed­u­ca­tion and a STEM, Sci­ence, Tech­nol­ogy, En­gi­neer­ing and Math, coun­ty­wide pro­ject.

“Through the pro­gram we in­tro­duced some cod­ing and sci­ence and math col­lab­o­ra­tion in our classes. I spent al­most ev­ery Fri­day last year teach­ing cod­ing in my sci­ence class as a prob­lem solv­ing strat­egy for sci­ence,” He-

flin ex­plained. “Last year we both coached a team from Escalon to com­pete in the county hackathon. A hackathon is a com­pe­ti­tion where you are given a prob­lem and you de­vise a so­lu­tion by us­ing pro­gram­ming and STEM ed­u­ca­tion.”

The prob­lem given to teams to solve fo­cused on wa­ter con­ser­va­tion.

“Our team did very well. One of the mem­bers, An­gel Sanchez wanted to see Escalon do more for cod­ing and STEM ed­u­ca­tion. He had done some cod­ing on his own but the hackathon and cod­ing in physics made him want more for him­self and his friends,” added He­flin. “He talked Chris and I into start­ing a cod­ing/tech­nol­ogy club since at the time Escalon didn’t re­ally have an out­let of that kind for stu­dents.” Do­na­tions from Mark Ho­gan and Ho­gan Man­u­fac­tur­ing pro­vided ad­vice and support to get the pro­ject off the ground.

“We got mini pro­ces­sor kits, a laser printer and a 3D printer. An­gel ba­si­cally put the 3D printer to­gether from scratch,” He­flin pointed out. “We are still in the be­gin­ning stages of the club but An­gel has still learned a lot from the equip­ment.”

The county Of­fice of Ed­u­ca­tion of­fers a paid in­tern­ship pro­gram with Rare Parts Inc. in Stockton to a high school stu­dent and Sanchez ap­plied for pro­gram.

“The in­tern­ship pro­gram dur­ing the sum­mer teaches the stu­dent about the oc­cu­pa­tion of be­ing a ma­chin­ist,” He­flin said.

Eight stu­dents in the county were called back for in­ter­views and, out of the eight, Sanchez was the one se­lected for the in­tern­ship pro­gram. He­flin and Sanchez re­cently at­tended the fourth an­nual STEM Awards din­ner at the county of­fice and Sanchez was pre­sented with an award and the in­tern­ship. He also re­ceived an award from Con­gress­man Jerry McNer­ney.

“An­gel knew what he wanted and found a way to work to get it,” He­flin said. “I was blown away when in a county with tons of STEM pro­grams, An­gel rocks the house and gets an in­tern­ship over stu­dents from all other schools.”

In his ac­cep­tance speech, Sanchez thanked those that helped him achieve the goal, not­ing he had re­ceived support from many in the com­mu­nity.

“I am proud to live in a town that sup­ports its youth,” He­flin agreed. “Many peo­ple in town pro­vided re­sources to get An­gel to this night.”

PHOTO CON­TRIB­UTED

An­gel Sanchez of Escalon has re­ceived a paid in­tern­ship at Rare Parts, Inc. a ma­chine shop in Stockton, through a coun­ty­wide STEM com­pe­ti­tion.

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