USU Extension 4-H partners with Google to expand computer science education

Stock image, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The National 4-H Council recently announced a new $6 million collaboration with Google to bring computer science education to underserved youth across the country with a new computer science pathway.

Youth participate in a 4-H computer science program, date and location not specified | Image courtesy of Utah State University, St. George News

Utah State University Extension’s 4-H program has been a key partner in co-creating the computer science curriculum and developing tools for educators to implement the program, according to a news release issued by USU.

USU Extension 4-H supports the new pathway by providing training for 15 programs at a variety of land-grant universities. The training teaches youth and adults how they can develop and implement computer science education programs that align with local interests, needs and resources.

The Google-supported program lays the groundwork for 4-H to deliver computer science education across the organization, which reaches nearly 6 million youth across every county in the U.S.

“I am grateful that Google.org supports the build out of the Computer Science Pathway,” Dave Francis, USU Extension youth development director, said in the news release.

“Utah youth and dedicated volunteers have been early adopters of youth computer science programs. We appreciate the work they do and willingness to share lessons learned with other 4-H programs. We look forward to seeing what new learning experiences they will innovate as part of this program.”

The collaboration will focus on how computer science skills can prepare youth for future careers, regardless of their chosen profession.

Those efforts build on USU Extension’s existing computer science program for youth. Across the state, USU Extension 4-H programs provide training and support for youth interested in a computer science pathway. These experiences include camps, 4-H clubs, teacher professional development, competitions and more.

Google’s support will equip 4-H educators with new funding, curriculum, training, devices and access to Google computer science experts. As with most 4-H programs, the effort will feature teen-led, peer-to-peer mentoring.

For more information, visit the USU Extension website.

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