Exposing Central Texas students to the benefits of coding

Exposing Central Texas students to the benefits of coding

Posted By Greater Austin Chamber | Dec 05, 2017
Education and Talent, Public Policy Print Article Exposing Central Texas students to the benefits of coding

The Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce partners with local technology groups to sponsor the first ever coding event at the Texas Capitol

In celebration of Computer Science Education Week, the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce sponsored Hour of Code at the Texas Capitol. More than 50 Central Texas students participated in the kickoff event by gaining knowledge in coding and participating in technological demonstrations on the floor of the Texas House Chamber.

In Central Texas, demand for tech talent continues to remain high. Eight of the top twenty occupations in the region are tech related and nearly seventeen percent of open jobs are in the computer and mathematical fields. This equates to more than 7,000 jobs in the region alone.

Yet, only two percent of Texas high school graduates completed a computer science course in 2015. The reasoning—a lack of Texas teachers certified to teach the course. According to Code.org, only 27 teachers graduated from Texas universities with computer science degrees in 2016.

 “The Central Texas region will not remain economically competitive unless we improve access to computer science education for all students,” said Drew Scheberle, SVP of Government Relations with the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce. “Our smallest constituents deserve an education system that successfully prepares them for success in an ever-changing workforce.”

Hour of Code is a global movement that introduces computer science and programming to more than 100 million students in over 180 countries. The event was the first of its kind at the Texas Capitol. The Austin Chamber partnered with UT Austin’s WeTeach_CS, TCEA, TechNet, and CS4TX. Texas Representatives Donna Howard and Celia Israel attended the event to show support.  

For more information on the Chamber’s public policy efforts, click here

Picture 1: Texas Representative Donna Howard (right) joins a student during Hour of Code held at the Texas House Chamber floor. 

Picture 2: Texas Representative Celia Israel (center) intently listens as younger constituents discuss coding at the Texas Capitol. 

Greater Austin Chamber

The Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce focuses on how the Austin Region works. We serve as the voice of business for 2,800 organizations representing a combined workforce of about 330,000 employees throughout Central Texas. Our mission is to provide leadership that facilitates the creation of a prosperous regional economy and effective advocacy for members.