'A Lot to Learn' Podcast : Pat Yongpradit
As a technology-driven company, we believe in unlocking the power of education. In 2021, Casca committed to donating $1 from every pair of shoes to code.org, a non-profit organization dedicated to expanding access to computer science in schools and increasing participation from underrepresented groups. With this initiative, we hope to help fuel the next generation of change-makers and ensure that the work we do today builds momentum towards even more progress in the years ahead.
On this episode of ‘A Lot to Learn’, our hosts Braden and Mike got the chance to talk with Pat Yongpradit, the Chief Academic Officer at code.org. As a high school computer science teacher, he inspired students to create mobile games and apps for social causes and implemented initiatives to broaden participation in computer science among underrepresented groups. He is certified in biology, physics, math, health, and technology education, and has been recognized as a Microsoft Worldwide Innovative Educator.
Code.org’s mission is to expand computer science education not only throughout the North American curriculum, but especially in underrepresented areas. The large gap in visible minorities and young girls participating in comp sci can be attributed to a variety of things. In their discussion, Pat explains that many urban school districts might be focused on students merely meeting standard grades and courses, rather than learning new or innovative subjects. Many of these schools fail to offer computer science because they don’t have the resources, budget, or curriculum despite the fact that 67% of new STEM jobs are in computing. Which is precisely where both Pat & code.org come in; offering tools, resources and curriculum and professional development to teachers, parents and students all for free. Technology education is incredibly important as it feeds into almost every industry these days, from medicine to manufacturing and urban planning.
Throughout the episode, Pat and our team touch on various subjects like what it’s like to work for a startup, the impacts of COVID and online learning, and what types of tools and resources code.org provides parents with to better support their children in computer education. To date, over 60 million students have been engaged through code.org, and we look forward to seeing their impacts grow in the coming years. Enjoy the episode and as always, please feel free to reach out if you have any comments or questions. We all have a lot to learn.