CSforCHI February ’22 Committee Meeting


It’s nice to imagine that soon we may be able to have fewer Zoom events replacing our beloved in-person ones—maybe while still supporting a hybrid option. Here are some highlights from our February ’22 Core Group Committee Meeting.

Chicago Learning Days
Chicago Learning Days was a continual point of interest at the meeting. I shared CSforCHI’s intent of holding multiple programs during the festival, aimed at serving families at different types of community sites, and for varying skills levels.

Project Exploration, serving as the Austin Hub Lead for Chicago Learning Days, shared they are seeking organizations interested in hosting an event in Austin for the festival. Orgs on board so far include; a manufacturing company, an aerospace engineering organization, and an aviation organization. There will also be an in-person networking event at the beginning of the fest. Contact Sarah Tinsman at PE for more information and for the Chicago Learning Days: Austin Interest Form. Sana shared reflections on the previous years and confirmation that hybrid will still be an option this year but our data show that in-person events were most well attended.

More in May
We also learned that CPS will have a large robotics competition come May 14th featuring 30+ CPS Schools. This would be a great opportunity to get your org in front of teachers and parents as CPS looks to bring robotics adjacent (CS and STEM-at-large) resources to the event. Stay tuned for more information!

Computer Science Career Pathways
Points were brought up that engaging parents directly should be another key aspect to think about for our programs. The thought is that it serves to better equip them with understanding career pathways their children might pursue. We discussed how we might best reach parents outside of Chicago Learning Days. Such as sharing pathway models is a digestible format such as a career playbook—Perhaps this could be modeled after something like this handbook from U.S. BLS—then delivering them where families are; libraries, community spaces, and everyday use spaces such as laundromats and shop bulletins.

I’ll kick this off by creating a career guide page on the CSforCHI Hub.

The CSforCHI Hub
Our CSforCHI Hub is built on WordPress P2 for open collaboration and posterity. The idea for this site came after discussions in 2021 to centralize information for sharing resources and best practices across our orgs and to families. There’s a post on the front page now open for anyone to add additional thoughts to the insights shared in Wednesday’s slide deck presentation.

I also touched on the pages initiated on the site and how it is open for community edits and contributions. The site is open to all for accessibility. Guests can engage by commenting without registering but for best access, be sure to join the community by creating an account.

Teens Teams & Next Core Group Committee Meeting
On March 23rd, we have a Teen Program at the Douglass YOUmedia, located in the North Lawndale neighborhood on March 23rd. Core Committee members are invited to join us for the program as an opportunity to engage the public and network with the CLX team and other visiting members.

There is also a TBD (if you have a space to host a hybrid event, please reach out) Committee meeting on or near April 27th, with the intent to bring in additional out-of-school voices. I would like to push for more representation from the BIPOC community within the Chicago CS Ecosystem. Please pay extra notice to help us invite additional BIPOC organizations and community members to our next conversation.

That is all for now.

Jorge, Program Manager at CLX

Discussion: Insights from Field Conversations

Welcome to the CSforCHI Hub and our first discussion post. In my first few weeks at CLX, I read through past meeting notes, the strategic plan, and spoke to many people involved in prior months.

These are the insights I gathered from that research phase and it would be great to hear more from the community. What resonates with you? What challenge here has your organization been able to overcome and how? Let’s discuss!

– Schools want to connect youth & families to CS opportunities beyond the school day.

– Program providers have content but present-day challenges make it difficult to reach more youth.

– Families want to educate their children, safely, and purposefully, in a way that supports their schedules.

– Community spaces want to provide more programming but don’t always have access to personnel who can cover the content.

While you’re here, tell us what you think of the site. Be sure to check out the Pages and feel free to post and contribute as you like. Thank you!

Welcome to CSforCHI’s Hub!

This is your CSforCHI Hub✨

Post updates, ask questions, brainstorm ideas, give feedback — all your CSforCHI discussions, all in one place. No more losing important thoughts and documents in old email threads! Everything’s here, everything’s searchable.

Bring your team in

Coworkers, community partners, youth, and families… All of Chicago is welcome to join in on the conversation! 🙌

To invite specific people, go to the Invite People area in the dashboard. Their picture will appear on the sidebar of your P2 once they join, so you can put faces to names. The whole site is public, letting anyone contribute.

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