By Bret Piatt
Mar 6, 2018
This past Saturday, March 3, episode 75 of Cyber Talk Radio hit the air on 1200 WOAI and iHeartRadio streaming. I was joined by Jason Salazar, Andrea Torres Sauceda Laurent, and Dr. Don Davis to discuss he first freshman class experience at the new technology and business focused high school.
We kick off the show by having the Jason, Andrea and Dr. Don gives us more background on the inaugural class of CAST Tech and their passions for computer science and cybersecurity. Both students have recently participated in CyberPatriot, which is a great way for students to get involved and learn more about cybersecurity. Fun fact - The high school doesn’t have a football team, but it does have a CyberPatriot team. They even celebrate with a CyberPatriot pep rally! What does a typical day in the life of a CAST Tech student look like? The students share more about the daily routine of a CAST Tech student and how the job shadowing, real-life business industry exposure makes a huge difference in their curriculum and learning. Technology is threaded throughout the students entire school day. Even PE class incorporates technology with FitBits, Chromebooks and iPads. Project-based learning is a key component of the curriculum at CAST Tech. For their digital arts class, the students created coloring books for the child life specialist group at Santa Rosa Children’s Hospital. How cool is that?
In the second half of the show, we discuss how there is a common misconception that since most millennials are on their smartphones or laptops majority of the time, it means that they are technical. Guess what, thats not always true. How do we get kids more excited about experimenting with technology? Andrea recommends showing kids the opportunities that are out there, jobs that are available and salary research. Jason and Andrea mentioned that once you are exposed to technology taking a computer science class then exposes students to the different technology focus areas that they can dig deeper. Big shout out to Youth Code Jam for playing a major role in exposing kids to coding and what’s out there. CyberTexas Foundation is another great organization as it helps schools get tech programs set up. CAST Tech is very supportive and gives students guidance on how to pursue Science. Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) careers. An example is the mentor program to get kids engaged in seeing the everyday live of different cyber careers. The students have even met Congressman Hurd on multiple occasions. To close out the show, Andrea encourages more women to get involved in tech, there are lots of opportunities out there!
Learn more about CAST Tech High School in the full episode replay available here!**
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