Hacking 'Ninjas' Represent High-Tech Future

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(Image courtesy of TechPoint Youth Foundation.) (Image courtesy of TechPoint Youth Foundation.)

TechPoint Foundation For Youth Executive Director Laura Dodds says Saturday's inaugural CoderDojo Hackathon at DeveloperTown in Indianapolis is one more piece in building the state's talent pipeline. She says the event is expected to attract 100 "ninjas" from throughout the state and believes participation could eventually grow five-fold. The foundation oversees 35 "dojos" in Indiana that provide high-tech learning opportunities for young students. During an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Dodds said the event will allow 10 teams to participate in challenges related to one of the state's fastest-growing fields.

She tells Multimedia Journalist Mary-Rachel Redman its important to capture students' interest in high-tech early. "Kids don't make their decisions on what they want to be in high school, they make decisions in elementary school about what interests them and by high school, they've made those decisions," she says. "By college, they're majoring in the careers they want to be in, so we know that if we want to make sure that the state's economy is filled with the talent that we need to be successful, we have to start first with those little Hoosiers and get them excited before high school."

CoderDojo Hackathon will involve students age 7-17 taking on bronze, silver, gold and platinum-level challenges involving Python and Scratch skills. Points are awarded based on difficulty of a given challenge.

You can connect to more about the program from the TechPoint Youth Foundation by clicking here.

Editor's note: a previous version misspelled Laura Dodds' name.

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