Concordia Lutheran High School

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See Taylor Swift, Take Computer Science!

For my daughter’s 13th birthday I took her to Indianapolis for the Taylor Swift concert, and I have to say it was the best show I have ever seen IN MY LIFE!

Know this, you’re not talking to a concert noob here! I’ve been to KISS, Crue, GNR, Poison, Ratt, Leppard, Jovi and the list goes on. So what made Taylor’s so good? First, in the pop music scene, she is best in-class and spared no expense on her show. Second, the Reputation tour used cutting-edge technology earmarked by a 110-foot stage screen and PixMob's LED Wristband.

Without going into too much detail about the performance, the main ideas about it revolve around going all-out to be the best and the ubiquity of technology.

Applying those themes to the Concordia Computer Science program I have to ask myself if I am doing the best I can and even if so, why should students be interested?

In terms of being the best we can, CLHS and the CS program:

  • Is the only area high school to offer three dual credit classes in Computer Science.
  • Offers hands-on and project based learning in STEM projects including full-size videogame arcades, computer building, and digital signage.
  • Is the reigning TechFest champion.
  • Has promoted more than 20 CS students to paid positions performing summer tech work and/or assisting in computer camps while still attending Concordia.
  • Utilizes student talent to perform real world tasks in networking, email administration, and student database management.
  • Has the “Disrupting the Pink Aisle” program specifically designed to promote gender diversity in CS.
  • Explores technology areas including programming, robotics, and system architecture.
  • Has a classroom focus on logic, problem solving, and collaboration.
  • Modifies course and project curriculum every semester to keep students engaged.

Just like Taylor wants her show to be more than just a performance, I want CS at Concordia to be more than just a class. It should be an experience reaching out to everyone and getting as many people involved as possible. This is accomplished by doing the best you can and always striving to do better the next time out.

So why should students care? Was Taylor’s show a woman standing on a stage singing 19 songs or was it the 70,000 LED multi-colored wristbands keeping visual beat to the music? Was it a guitar lick or a 110-foot “optical illusion” screen? Was it sparkly clothes and dancing or CGI and computer controlled pyrotechnics? The point is not to argue about what made the show so awesome but to recognize that technology is everywhere and had a huge role in the concert!

See Taylor Swift and be amazed. Take computer science and create the amazement.

Scott Storm,
Director of Technology