K-12 Tech Education

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Local programming instructor champions the life-changing power of coding

By SPN Newsroom / September 12, 2020

Vanessa Kasun is debugging some code, finalizing her presentation for the upcoming Heartland Developers Conference on Sept. 24. The topic? How to build a React app from the ground up. Kasun, an instructor at AIM Code School, will take HDC attendees from installation of the Node.js open-source cross-platform Javascript runtime environment to launching a simple…

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From menace to memory booster: video games connect youth, community, nonprofits, thanks to Community Esports League

By SPN Newsroom / July 31, 2020

A Kansas City-based esports league is working to connect communities and assist non-profits through competitive video gaming. Community Esports League is an inclusive, community-driven gaming league geared towards youth and hobbyist gamers to foster healthy competition and the creation of sustainable connections online.  AbdulRasheed Yahaya, chief business development officer for Community Esports League, said the…

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UNO students team up to develop 1-Check COVID app

By Amanda Brandt / July 2, 2020

As the global pandemic spread this spring, a trio of University of Nebraska at Omaha students helped quickly turn an idea into a valuable COVID-19 screening tool. The 1-Check COVID app was the result of an interdisciplinary team effort across the University of Nebraska Medical Center and UNO. Staff from the emergency medicine department at…

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Omaha South High School Grads Launch Tech Careers, Land Paid Summer Internships at Union Pacific 

By Tom McCauley / May 18, 2020

This summer, two recent Omaha South High School graduates, Suraj Poudel and Evelyn Espinoza Macias, will enter highly competitive paid internships at Union Pacific after participating in the AIM Institute’s pilot workforce development program that teaches high school students how to code.  Ashok Fichadia, Assistant Vice President of IT Development for Union Pacific, said the…

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Virtual Workforce Development Approach Encourages Youth to Dig Themselves, Discover Their Talents and Compete for Prize Money

By SPN Newsroom / April 4, 2020

When CEO of Symphony Workforce Todd Smith speaks about Discover Your Genius, a workforce development challenge for high school and college students, enthusiasm brightens his voice.  When he describes what DYG (“dig”) has done for underserved youth across Nebraska—particularly in rural areas where food deserts, poverty and lack of mental health services persist—it’s hard to…

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Nearly 1,000 Iowa Junior High Students Learned to Code Today. That’s Good News.

By Tom McCauley / December 11, 2019

Today, with the help of the AIM Institute, nearly 1,000 students at Woodrow Wilson Junior High School in Council Bluffs learned the fundamentals of computer programming as part of the international Hour of Code initiative.  Principal Mike Naughton expressed his excitement over every student getting a firsthand experience with coding during their science classes. “Anytime…

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