BOCA RATON, Fla. — A group of local high school students is sparking a newfound love among their fellow classmates for computer technology.
Luke Fisher, Maximilian Meiler, and Alek Fecteau name their team Hecor computer Science Industries.
They are 11th graders at Spanish River High School in Boca Raton. The team won the first-ever canCode's Hackathon competition last Sunday.
“I didn’t think we’d make it that far. Especially, seeing the other projects and how innovative they were,” said Fisher.
“We got to the semi-finals. We presented. We held our breath and we won. It was crazy,” said Meiler.
“Surprised we won. We ran into a lot of hiccups, we submitted with ten seconds left,” said Fecteau.
The hackathon challenged teams in more ways than one.
“The start and the end are exactly two hours. You have to make the game and then the curriculum that goes with it, in that two-hour stretch. Once that time is up, you’re done,” Fecteau.
The curriculum the team develops is used in hopes to reboot interest among underserved elementary students in computer programming. canCode has taught over 400 elementary schoolers and engaged 20 teen-volunteer-teachers. Noah Rubin started canCode in 2016.
“The way that they develop their curriculum is actually modular. So we can teach different parts of the game at different workshops,” said Rubin.
These students now feel they have gained more skills, and look to inspire others.
“I think it’s great that with canCode we’re able to teach younger children just basic concepts of code with fun and engaging ways to teach them, by just making games,” said Meiler. “I think it has a good impact on overall knowledge of code.